January/February 2022: VOLUME 8 ISSUE 1
Meet Your 2022
Leadership Team NJREALTOR.COM
Better technology and data for you. Greater exposure for your listings.
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• Support to take you further: Award-winning customer service and the hands-on support you want to take your business to the next level.
• Greater exposure for you and your listings: Get your listings in front of 20 million consumers and 100,000 real estate professionals throughout the Mid-Atlantic.
Check out what’s new! Updates to listing entry to help you work faster and more efficiently, brand new Teams solution and media center, exclusive market insights to share with your clients and more. Bright continues to expand its tools and features for New Jersey agents.
Read the latest at BrightMLS.com/MoveForward.
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Build your career with the people who have your best interests in mind. Become part of the Howard Hanna | Rand Realty Family.
Schedule a chat with one of our branch managers in your area. Coffee is on us!
NEW JERSEY REALTOR ® | January/February 2022 | 1
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® A publication of New Jersey Realtors®
10 Hamilton Avenue Trenton, NJ 08611 Phone: 609-341-7100 njrealtor.com
Jarrod C. Grasso, RCE Chief Executive Officer PUBLIC RELATIONS AND MARKETING DEPARTMENT Colleen King Oliver Director of Public Relations &
Marketing | firstname.lastname@example.org
2021 OFFICERS Jeffrey Jones
First Vice President
CONTENTS January/February 2022
Important Dates & Deadlines
President’s View: Ringing in the New Year with New Association Goals
Homeownership Myths Debunked
Town Spotlight: Jersey City
Laura Lemos | 973-822-9274 email@example.com DESIGN Rebecca Ryan McQuigg | Encompass Media Group
CEO’s Desk: NJ Realtors® Will Continue to Offer Forms in 2022
New Jersey Realtors® provides legal and legislative
updates as well as information on a variety of real estate related topics solely for the use of its members.
Legislative Update: Thank You for Your RPAC Support in 2021!
Due to the wide range of issues affecting its members, NJ Realtors® publishes information concerning those issues that NJ Realtors , in its sole discretion, deems ®
the most important for its members.
Introducing Your 2022 Leadership Team
The content and accuracy of all articles and/or advertisements by persons not employed by or agents of NJ Realtor® are the sole responsibility of their author. NJ Realtors® disclaims any liability or responsibility for their content or accuracy. Where such articles and/or advertisements contain legal
Realtors® Triple Play 2021 Wrap Up
advice or standards, NJ Realtors® recommends that
The Dangers of Wire Fraud: Help Protect Your Clients
24 25 26
NJ Realtors® seek legal counsel with regard to any
First-Time Buyer Financing Tips and Tricks
Realtor® of the Year Awards
Realtor®-Associate of the Year Awards
2021 Good Neighbor Award Winners
specific situation to which they may seek to apply the article. New
Realtor ® ,
13260. Published bi-monthly each year. Member
2021 Quarter Century Club & Realtor® Emeritus Recipients
subscriptions allocated annually from annual dues: $3. Non-member annual subscription: $10. Known office of publication: 10 Hamilton Avenue, Trenton, NJ 08611. Periodicals postage paid at Trenton, NJ 08611 and at additional mailing offices.
POSTMASTER: Send address change to Editor, 10
Top Three Questions from NJ Realtors® Legal Resource Library
Hamilton Avenue, Trenton, NJ 08611.
2 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
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Thank you to our members for your continued support. For those that have yet to join, we encourage you to learn about all our benefits by visiting newjerseymls.com/realtor.
*Highest percentage growth among the largest MLSs in NJ based on 2020 membership figures reported in the Real Estate Almanac by T3 Sixty.
NEW JERSEY REALTOR ® | January/February 2022 | 5
Ringing in the New Year with New Goals BY ROBERT WHITE
am honored to be your NJ Realtors® 2022 President and proud to be working with a great Leadership Team this year—together we will all work together to make 2022 a great year for all our members. In the year ahead I’m focusing on three key areas: diversity, equality, and inclusion; continued engagement; and advocacy. To me, diversity, equality, and inclusion is a simple concept—follow the Golden Rule and treat others as you would like to be treated. We are so lucky live in one of the most diverse states in the nation and sell the American Dream to everyone, regardless of who they are, what they look like, or who they love. This is important to me personally, but it’s important to our industry to understand this for continued success. The pandemic had a few unintended side effects and one of them was very high member engagement. We’ve worked hard to keep the momentum going and we’ll continue to do so, but with a renewed focus on brokers and managers. We know information is received better when it comes directly
4 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
from an agent’s broker, and we’ll continue to work to reach the brokers and managers around the state and provide them with the necessary information their offices need. Advocacy is one of our most talked about member benefits, but it bears repeating. Our greatest successes are the advocacy efforts we make to help not only our membership, but the public too. As our mission statement says, “New Jersey Realtors® aggressively advocates for all things real estate.” I believe in this wholeheartedly and know whatever opportunities we have, private property rights and homeownership will be supported and well-handled. I can’t wait for the year ahead and thank you all for your support and encouragement.
FROM THE CEO’S DESK
NJ Realtors® Will Continue to Offer Forms in 2022
f one of your 2022 goals is to work smarter and mitigate
transactions wherever you are. Members can create and
risk, you’re in luck. New Jersey Realtors is continuing its
manage transactions, send e-signatures, and more from their
partnership with Lone Wolf Technologies through 2024.
With this renewed partnership come valuable membership
benefits that are available to all members at no additional cost.
The transaction management system helps you manage deals from start to finish while helping you stay compliant. Log on to
New Jersey Realtors Library of Forms
zipForm Transactions for fillable forms, templates, transaction
The best way to protect yourself and your business is to utilize
checklists, transaction guides, and unlimited document storage.
NJ Realtors Library of Forms, available at ®
njrealtor.com/zipform. The industry is constantly changing,
and the forms library always updates forms to follow new
Managing transactions isn’t the job of one agent, which is why
laws and addendums. It has everything you need to conduct
including the broker edition with our partnership was at the
top of the list. Brokers will have insight necessary to manage transactions from listing to closing, while agents will have the
tools needed to get them to the table. Continuing to offer the
Digital Ink 2.0, powered by Authentisign, will help agents,
broker edition as a member benefit helps brokers connect with
brokers, and clients to streamline the transaction and sign
agents, provide guidance, ensure compliance, provide cash
documents digitally. All forms in the NJ Realtors Library of
flow, and pipeline insight, and more.
Forms come pre-tagged for e-signatures, making your signing setup faster and easier than ever before.
Hit the ground running with all the NJ Realtors® Library of Forms member benefits by watching how-to videos at
The most requested benefit added through our renewed partnership is zipForm Mobile Edition. All NJ Realtors® members now have access to help stay connected to your
NEW JERSEY REALTOR ® | January/February 2022 | 5
I M P O R TA N T D AT E S & D E A D L I N E S
1 NJ Realtors
Office Closed New Year’s Day ®
7 Orthodox Christmas Day 14 Orthodox New Year 17 NJ Realtors
Office Closed Martin Luther King Jr. Day ®
Black History Month
Women’s History Month
Fair Housing Month
1 Lunar New Year
2 Ash Wednesday
1 April Fools’ Day
2 Groundhog Day
13 2 Daylight Saving Time Begins Ramadan Begins
14 Valentine’s Day
15 Passover Begins
17 Mardi Gras
17 St. Patrick’s Day
22 21 Board of Directors Meeting NJ Realtors
Office Closed Presidents’ Day ®
5-6 National Association of
Realtors® Realtor® Broker Summit
10 Palm Sunday 12 Board of Directors Meeting 15 Tax Day 15 Good Friday 17 Easter 22 Earth Day 22 Orthodox Good Friday 24 Orthodox Easter
For the Latest Industry News, Follow Us On @njrealtors
6 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
L E G I S L AT I V E U P D AT E
Thank You for Your RPAC Support in 2021! W
ith the 2021 Realtors® Political Action Committee year officially in the books, RPAC of NJ had one of its most successful fundraising years to date. With your support in 2021, RPAC of NJ raised 121 percent of its annual goal, surpassed its Major Investors goal by 108 percent, had 29 President’s Circle Members, and achieved 104 percent of its member participation goal.
RPAC NAR HALL OF FAME $75,000 Level Christina P. Clemans * $50,000 Level Christina J. Banasiak Mary Davis Allan H. Dechert * William J. Hanley Randy L. Ketive * Charles S. Oppler Angela Sicoli * $25,000 Level Judy N. Appleby Eric Birchler * Eugenia K. Bonilla Nelson Chen Rosanne L. Citta Drew S. Fishman Bonnie J. Fitzgerald William Flagg Jarrod C. Grasso Rose LaPira Cindy L. Marsh Tichy Lynne Mortimer * Robert Oppenheimer Bruce S. Shapiro * Carol J. Tangorra * Douglas M. Tomson
You made the difference when it came to advocating for issues vital to Realtors®, such as the time-of-sale requirement for lead paint inspections and remediation, and more. There are countless issues RPAC will work on in 2022, and we thank you for helping us start the year off strong with more than $126,000 in investments so far this year.
RPAC NJ REALTORS® HALL OF FAME
Diane Streichert Sussex County Association of Realtors® John Terebey, Jr. Diane Traverso TREND MLS Kim Ward Bacso Randolph Wine Ronald Woods John Zennario
Gold Level – (Over $10,000) Graeme W. Atkinson Janet Barton Terry Brannin Roxanne Daiuto Genette Falk Brian Groetsch Kathleen Ann Houston Jeffrey A. Jones Edith Josephson Ellen W. Kale Scott Lauri Nick Manis Gloria Monks NEXUS Association of Realtors® Gloria Nilson Michael Oppler Bowen Pak Michael Pennisi Gloria Siciliano Robert Southwick Marc Stein
Platinum Level – (Over $15,000) Gene Azzalina Annekee Brahver-Keely Erin Brown Mary Burke Cape May County Association of Realtors®, Inc. Cape May County MLS Central Jersey MLS Sherry Chris CORE Association of Realtors® James J. Elek David Fialk Marlyn Friedberg Tg Glazer Ilene F. Horowitz Gloucester Salem Counties Board of Realtors® Barry S. Goodman Greater Bergen Realtors® James W. Joeriman
Edward Ward Robert White Gloria Woodward
*Indicates Induction to RPAC Hall of Fame in 2022
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 7
L E G I S L AT I V E U P D AT E Roger Love Metro Centre Association of Realtors® Monmouth Ocean Regional Realtors® Kathleen Morin Lynne Mortimer New Jersey MLS North Central Jersey Association of Realtors® Andrea Schlosser Christian Schlueter Ann Schuld Diane S. Turton
PRESIDENT’S CIRCLE Christina J. Banasiak Colleen Camillo Laura Castella Christina P. Clemans Mary Davis Allan H. Dechert Drew S. Fishman Tracy Freeman Tg Glazer Jarrod C. Grasso William J. Hanley Ilene F. Horowitz Jeffrey A. Jones Randy L. Ketive Nick T. Manis Kathleen Morin Lynne Mortimer Mary M. Nuziale Charles S. Oppler Jeanine Pescatore Jairo Rodriguez Christian Schlueter Gloria Siciliano Angela Sicoli Wendy M. Smith Carol J. Tangorra Douglas M. Tomson Diane Traverso Robert White
MAJOR INVESTORS Platinum Diamond ‘R’ Bright MLS
8 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
Platinum ‘R’ Lynne Mortimer * Monmouth Ocean Regional Realtors® New Jersey Realtors® New Jersey MLS North Central Jersey Association of Realtors® Charter Golden ‘R’ Gloria Woodward Golden ‘R’ Central Jersey MLS Allan H. Dechert * Greater Bergen Realtors® Nick T. Manis * Gloria A. Monks Mary M. Nuziale * Carol J. Tangorra * Heather Tindall Robillard Sustaining Golden ‘R’ Christina J. Banasiak * Eugenia K. Bonilla Nelson Chen Christina P. Clemans * Mary Davis * Drew S. Fishman * Jarrod C. Grasso * William J. Hanley * Ilene F. Horowitz * Randy L. Ketive * Scott Lauri Kathleen Morin * Charles S. Oppler * Bruce Shapiro Angela Sicoli * Robert White * Crystal ‘R’ Cape May County MLS Laura Castella * Angela M. Fusaro Jeanine Pescatore * Jairo Rodriguez * Wendy M. Smith * John A. Terebey
Sustaining Crystal ‘R’ Tg Glazer * 1st Time Sterling ‘R’ Atlantic City & County Board of Realtors® Nicole Banbor Carolyn Bardach Dorothy M. Bellas Dawn Bricker Barry Bruno Ellen Calman Colleen Camillo * Maria “Mia” Carina Forsberg-Villon Brian Collini Manuel Couto Maria Dargan Teresa DeLorenzo Sarah M. Drennan Robert J. Durso Nicola G. Esposito Frank D. Glaush Felix Greco Allegra T. House Suzanne G. Jahn Anne LaBate Susan LaRue Ya Yuan Lien Rosemarie McGeehan Mary Mitchell Judith A. Moriarty Arthur Napolitano Terrie O’Connor Susanna Philippoussis Gregory Rice Tammy S. Roberts Ikhlas Saleh Patricia Salzer Beam Karen Sluyk Katty Velez 2nd Time Sterling ‘R’ Gene Amsel Valerie Archer Belardo Catherine Best Kristen DeLeo Larry J. DePalma Valerie A. Dickson
L E G I S L AT I V E U P D AT E Aloysius Donohue Enrique Hernandez Brian S. Kim Kathleen M. McDonough Eileen O’Driscoll Steve Porzio Brenda A. Richmond Colin A. Somerville Teresa Trigas-Pfefferle 3rd Time Sterling ‘R’ Frances Blakely Angela B. Bonica-Ponticelli Debra A. Flower Susan Giacchi Gene Krutyansky Sally B. Ponchak Mary R. Ryder Sussex County Association of Realtors® 4 Time Sterling ‘R’ Norma E. Bonilla Michael J. Brand Kenneth R. Freeman Tracy Freeman * William F. Gilsenan William O. Keleher Robert A. Russo Nicole Sabarese Samy B. Sabbagh Gloria V. Siciliano * South Jersey Shore Regional MLS th
5 Time Sterling ‘R’ Orna Ben-Or Jackson Daniel Corrigan Nina Eizikovitz Gloucester Salem Counties Board of Realtors® Michele Kolsky Assatly Judith F. Mizzone Alex Mosquera th
6th Time Sterling ‘R’ Maritza Aleman Dennis S. DeCarlo Lorraine Piro Colavito
7th Time Sterling ‘R’ David DePaola George Scott Glenfield Patricia Gray Hendricks Kathleen Ann Houston Alireza Memar Christine Lynn Rothwell John Terebey, Jr. Diane Traverso * Zohar Zamir 8 Time Sterling ‘R’ Angelo Michael DelDuca Jorge Ledesma Christian Schlueter * Marc Stein Albert S. Veltri John A. Zennario th
15th Time Sterling ‘R’ CORE Association of Realtors® Barry S. Goodman 16th Time Sterling ‘R’ Annekee Brahver-Keely 17th Time Sterling ‘R’ Rose LaPira 21st Time Sterling ‘R’ Eric J. Birchler 25th Time Sterling ‘R’ Bonnie J. Fitzgerald 26th Time Sterling ‘R’ Diane S. Turton
9th Time Sterling ‘R’ Terry M. Brannin
*President’s Circle Member
10th Time Sterling ‘R’ Brian Groetsch, Jr. James W. Joeriman Jeffrey A. Jones * Randolph L. Wine
Vincent Baricaua Carolyn Barszcz Bonnie Borghi Nehemias Borrero Nancy Bunin Nora Jane Burrows Brenda Connolly Meg Dwyer-Giobbie Brenda Foley Lugene Garrett Susan Gerardo Scott Gleason Denise Jasinski Laurie Jones Ellen Kale Marcia Klioze William Koumas Miriam Lambert Michael Lastella Annette Levine William Linteris Metro Centre Association of Realtors® Rhoda Moss-Latimer Donna Murray Chiquita Pittman Brian Prinsell
11th Time Sterling ‘R’ Robert L. Oppenheimer Ronald L. Woods 12th Time Sterling ‘R’ Erin Brown Mary Burke Michael Oppler Bowen Pak Douglas M. Tomson * 13th Time Sterling ‘R’ Cape May County Association of Realtors®, Inc. Diane M. Streichert 14th Time Sterling ‘R’ Andrea Schlosser
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 9
L E G I S L AT I V E U P D AT E Michelle Rizzo Rosa Santos Richard Shaffer Walter Smolenski Carolyn Strittmatter William Thompson Wendy Wineburgh Dessanti David Wyrsch Andrew Zastko
CAPITOL CLUB Margaret Ajamian Mario Aleman Linda Alexandroff Deanna Anderson James Arakelian Michelle Arnold Patricia Badia Jennifer Bassolino Marilyn Becker Thea Bowers Rosemarie Bracco Damon Bready Margaret Breslin Debra Brophy Daniel Brozyna Diana Bustamante Gloria Cartmell Martha Chanese Jeffrey Childers Dawn Corbo Dawn Cortes Michelle David Stuart Davis Amy DeBellis Juana Debrosse Nalaka Dias Diane Disbrow Lisa English Genette Falk Gareth Farmer Paul Ferreira Steven Finkelstein
Carla Flitter Melissa Florance-Lynch David Foudy Yesenia Frias Robert Funabashi Roberta Galkin Donna Gallo Lorraine Gardenier Benjamin Garrison Jessica Gonzalez Deborah Graske Rick Gullo Susan Hughes Zaidem Illescas Frank Isoldi Alexander Jedd Patricia Kayes Michele Kiely-Richards Lillie Kim Colleen King Oliver Robert Kinniebrew Mary Kissel Patrick Leonard Klein Serina Lancia Susanna Lee Debra Loggia Eric Macon Peter Madden Cherie Maio Michael Manna Susan Marcrie Peter Marron Charles Martini Kathleen McDonald Joanne McLaughlin Suely Melo Eric Morse Linda Musser Pamela Namowitz Sheldon Neal Barbara Ostroth Pauline Panza Billy Pena
Ina Perez Walls Joseph Pino Klaudia Piotrowicz Dawn Pugliese David Quinones Robert Rich Rudy Riveron Elis Rodriguez Didi Rosen John Ryan Lynn Scerbo Fay Smith Jeanine Soderlund Sandra Solomon Carol Stevenson Lucille Traversa Carol Tyson Ashworth Jeff Vander Molen Sandra Velasquez Catharine Vick Catherine Warnet Amy Weltner Justin Wrobel
JERSEY 2021 RPAC Goal:
2021 RPAC Dollars Raised:
$1,093.239 as of Dec. 20, 2021
Contributions to RPAC are not deductible for federal income tax purposes. Contributions are voluntary and are used for political purposes. The amounts indicated are merely guidelines and you may contribute more or less than the suggested amounts provided your contribution is within applicable contribution limits. The National Association of Realtors® and its state and local associations will not favor or disadvantage any member because of the amount contributed or a decision not to contribute. You may refuse to contribute without reprisal. Unless otherwise required by applicable law, any request for the refund of a contribution must be made within two (2) business days of the date on which you authorize RPAC to charge you for said contribution. Your contribution is split between National RPAC and the State PAC in your state. Contact your State Association or PAC for information about the percentages of your contribution provided to National RPAC and to the State PAC. The National RPAC portion is used to support federal candidates and is charged against your limits under 52 U.S.C. 30116.
10 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
FIRST-TIME BUYERS BE A HOME BODY
For New Jersey residents looking to buy their first home, saving enough money for a down payment often comes second to more immediate costs of living – student loans, childcare, rent, insurance, and additional expenses. There is a significant income ready segment of the New Jersey population poised to become first-time homebuyers, yet this initial down payment and closing cost hurdle is the # 1 impediment to their owning a home. New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency can help them over this hurdle.
FIRST-TIME HOMEBUYER DOWN PAYMENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM NJHMFA’s Down Payment Assistance (DPA) program provides $10,000 in down payment and closing cost assistance to first-time homebuyers. These funds need never be repaid if the borrower lives in their new home for at least five years. Learn more at TheRoadHomeNJ.com To partner on homebuying webinars for your current and potential clients, email firstname.lastname@example.org
NJHMFA is a self-sufficient agency of state government dedicated to offering New Jersey residents affordable and accessible housing.
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 11
Introducing Your 2022 Leadership Team President
Robert White Robert is a lifelong resident of Monmouth County, became a Realtor® in 2001 and earned his broker’s license in 2005. He is currently the Branch Vice President-Managing Broker of Coldwell Banker Realty in Spring Lake. Since 2008, Robert has been an active Director of the Board for the National Association of Realtors®. Currently, he serves on the Broker Engagement Council and is a representative on the Top 75 Large Firm Directors. He is also a Realtors® Political Action Committee Golden “R” and in 2016 Robert was inducted into the NAR RPAC Hall of Fame. Robert has also served on the NJ Realtors® Board of Directors since 2008. He was New Jersey Realtors® First Vice President in 2020, Association Operations Division Ofﬁcer in 2019, Professional Development Division Ofﬁcer in 2018, and has chaired and served on numerous committees. On the local level, Robert has been an active member of the Monmouth Ocean Regional Realtors® since 2002, been a member of the Executive Committee since 2008, and served as President in 2014 and 2015. He has also chaired many committees such as Associates, Budget and Finance, Grievance, MLS, Legislative & Political Affairs, and RPAC. In 2005 and 2015 White was named MORR Realtor® of the Year. Over the years Robert has volunteered for a number of local organizations and is currently on the Board of Trustees for the Boys and Girls Club of Monmouth County. Most recently he served four terms as President of the Interlaken Borough Council and was the Chair of the Administration & Finance Committee and the Public Safety Committee. Robert lives in the Wayside section of Ocean Township with his husband Andrew DePrisco. 12 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
Nick Manis Nick was New Jersey Realtors® Treasurer in 2018 and 2019, and has held roles as a Division Ofﬁcer since 2014. In addition, Nick served as chair and vice chair of several committees, has been a member of the Executive Committee since 2014, and served on the Board of Directors since 2011. On the national level, Nick is the 2021 Chair of the Federal Taxation Committee and has been a member of several additional committees since 2009. Currently, he is the National Association of Realtors® Federal Political Coordinator to U.S. Senator Cory A. Booker. On the local level, Nick served on the Board of Directors for Hunterdon/ Somerset Association of Realtors® in 2010. Nick was awarded the New Jersey Realtors® Good Neighbor Award in 2012, the National Association of Realtors® Good Neighbor Award in 2013, and the NAR Realtor® Heroes Award in 2012. Nick is married with two children.
First Vice President
Gloria, a resident of Mercer County, is the Managing Broker for Compass located in Princeton, NJ and holds a Real Estate Broker’s license in the states of New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Monks serves as the Membership Director for Women’s Council of Realtors® Mercer County Chapter, a member of the Mercer County Bar Association-Real Estate Section, Asian Real Estate Association of America, the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals® and served Bright (TREND) MLS as a Nominating Committee Member. Gloria currently serves as a Director for the National Association of Realtors®. She has also served as a National Association of Realtors® Committee Member with the Federal Taxation Committee, the Incentives for Construction/Rehabilitation of Homes work group and is an Inaugural Mentor for the National Association of Realtors® Mentorship Program. She is also a Realtors® Political Action Committee Golden “R”. On the State Level, Gloria serves as a member of the New Jersey Realtors® Board of Directors. She has served as Triple Play Convention Committee Chair and Risk Management Committee Vice-Chair. She is currently Division Ofﬁcer for Legal Affairs, Professional Standards and Risk Management Committees. Gloria also serves as an Issues Mobilization Fund Trustee and an RPAC of New Jersey Trustee. Gloria has served at the local level as President of CORE Association of Realtors®, President of Mercer County Association of Realtors®, Board of Directors Member and has served and chaired numerous committees at the local level since 2008. In 2020, Gloria was named Realtors® of the Year for New Jersey Realtors® and CORE Association of Realtors®. Gloria and her husband Bill have been married for 36 years and have three sons and two daughters.
Immediate Past President Jeff, a Realtor® since 1983, is the Broker Owner of Amerisource Realty Network, LLC in Parsippany, a commercial real estate ﬁrm specializing in ofﬁce, retail, industrial land sales, and leasing. On the state level, Jones served as New Jersey Realtors® 2020 President-Elect, 2019 First Vice President, 2017 Treasurer, 2015 Association Operations Division Ofﬁcer, and 2014 Professional Conduct Division Ofﬁcer. He has also served on NJ Realtors® Board of Directors, Executive Committee, and has chaired and served on numerous committees. On the local level, Jeff has been a member of the North Central Jersey Association of Realtors® Board of Trustees for several years, serving as Secretary and Treasurer twice. On the national level,
Gloria, a resident of Monmouth County, has been a Realtor® since 1998 and a broker since 2001. Gloria opened her ﬁrst real estate ofﬁce, RE/MAX Gateway, in Ocean Township, in 2006. In 2015 she opened an Ocean Grove location and, in 2016, Gloria partnered with her daughter Alexis to open an Asbury Park location. On the national level, Gloria has been an active member of the NAR Board of Directors since 2012. She has also served on the Resort and Second Home Committee, Membership Policy and Board Jurisdiction Committee, and looks forward to serving on the Multiple Listing and Policy Committee for 2022. She is a member of NJ Realtors® Board of Directors and served as a past Division Ofﬁcer of Association Operations, as well as numerous committees. Locally, Gloria is a Past President of Monmouth Ocean Regional Realtors® in 2016 and 2017. She served on the Professional Standards Committee, the Budget and Finance Committee, chaired the Insurance Committee, and served on the Board of Directors. In 2017, she was the Monmouth Ocean Regional Realtors® Realtor® of the Year. She is a proud supporter of RPAC as a current Silver “R”, and was inducted in the President’s Circle in 2021. Gloria is a loving wife to her husband Frank and mom to her two children, Frank and Alexis, who are all in the real estate business.
Jeff served on the Commercial Committee, Legislative Committee, and Regulatory Committee as well as a special Presidential PAG on commercial real estate in 2018. He has also been a Realtors® Political Action Committee Major Donor since 2013. In addition to his association work, Jeff authored a commercial course for North Central Jersey Association of Realtors® continuing education classes, and currently serves as one of North Central Jersey School of Business instructors. Jeff is a National Association of Realtors® certiﬁed Mediator and has served as a member of the New Jersey Supreme Court Ethics Committee. Jeff and his wife Marianne have been married for 37 years and have two daughters, Katie and Kelly. NEW JERSEY REALTOR ® | January/February 2022 | 13
Realtors® BY ERIN McFEETERS
he Triple Play Realtor® Convention & Trade Expo, hosted by NJ Realtors®, New York State Association of Realtors®, and Pennsylvania Association of Realtors®, was back in 2021 on Dec. 6-9 in Atlantic City.
6,600 ATTENDEES 275 EXHIBIT BOOTHS 44 SPEAKERS MORE THAN 100 SESSIONS NJ REALTORS® 2021 AWARD WINNERS At NJ Realtors® Annual Awards Ceremony held at Triple Play, the Realtor® Emeritus and the 2021 NJ Realtors® Quarter Century Club inductees were announced. Also announced were the 2021 Good Neighbor Award winners, the 2021 Realtor-Associate® of the Year winners, and the 2021 Realtor® of the Year recipients. Congratulations to 2021 NJ Realtors® Good Neighbor Award first-place winner Karen DeMarco for her work with The Food Brigade; second place winner Jane MacNeil for her work with Turn the Town Teal; and third place winner Alka Aneja for her work with Humbled By Your Service. Read more about 2021 winners on page 26. NJ Realtors® 2021 Realtor® of the Year and RealtorAssociate® of the Year have each been in the business for more than 20 years. NJ Realtors® was proud to announce Frances Blakely, CRS, PSA, AHWD, C2EX, as 2021 Realtor® of the Year, and Teresa Barba, ABR, SRS, CRS, as 2021 Realtor-Associate® of the Year. They were selected from the pool of local board and association Realtors® and Realtor-Associates® of the Year. “With more than 63,000 Realtors® in New Jersey, the pool of applicants for this year’s awards was extraordinary,” said 2022 NJ Realtors® President Robert White.
14 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
Wrap Up “Fran and Teresa are dedicated to their clients, to moving the industry forward, and to the Realtor® organization. We congratulate them both on their exceptional careers.”
Hack out of Here: Cybersecurity for Real Estate, while Melanie McLane assisted appraisers and agents tackle low inventory in her session, Appraisals in an Overheated Market.
INTRODUCING YOUR 2022 LEADERSHIP TEAM
If you missed out on the fun and are interested in any of the above courses, consider purchasing session recordings at realtorstripleplay.com/audiorecording.
Members dressed to the nines to attend NJ Realtors® Annual President’s Installation & Gala to celebrate the 2021 and 2022 Leadership Teams. The association celebrated the hard work of 2021 President Jeff Jones and the 2021 Leadership Team and inducted Robert White as 2022 President, Nick Manis as President-Elect, Gloria Monks as First Vice President, Gloria Siciliano as Treasurer, and Jeff Jones as Immediate Past President.
STAND OUT SESSIONS The everchanging housing market called for classes to help Realtors® help clients through the unique low inventory, historic low-interest rates, and higher than average median sales prices. Neal Oates’ session, Expand Your Global Reach, looked at the advantages of working with international clients and the challenges associated with these transactions. While Pam Erman’s, Seeing Double! Making the Most of a Multiple Offer Market, dove into multiple offer strategies and how to maximize a property’s exposure. Craig Grant helped attendees understand wire fraud and what to look out for with his session, Get the
TRIPLE PLAY NETWORKING EVENTS Attendees caught up with colleagues at Bally’s Wild West Saloon at the KickOff Party and danced the night away at this year’s Ice Breaker Reception at Caesar’s. These attendee-favorite events provide the perfect place to hang with other Realtors® and network.
THE REALTORS® TRIPLE PLAY EXPO For two days of Triple Play, attendees visited more than 275 exhibit booths showcased the latest products and services in the Atlantic City Convention Center. NJ Realtors® sported a brand-new booth featuring the Realtor® brand to help spread the word about member perks, association advocacy, and gave out reusable grocery totes in time for the NJ plastic bag ban starting in May.
THANK YOU Thank you to all who attended this year to make Triple Play 2021 a success! Mark your calendars now for Triple Play 2022—December 5-8.
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 15
Analyst Life Coach Interior Designer Project Manager
Real Estate Agent
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16 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
TOP 3 QUESTIONS
from NJ Realtors® Legal Resource Library
he New Jersey Realtors® Legal Resource Library is intended to help answer legal questions that arise in your day-to-day business. Browse the library at legal.njrealtor.com for past questions and/or submit a new question. Due to restrictions we have in New Jersey and the practice of law, our team will scrub your question of personal information before it is sent out for legal advice. Your answer will then be sent to you, without any personal information, and posted for the rest of membership to see. DISCLAIMER: Answers are current as of date of printing, but please visit legal.njrealtor.com for any updates.
OFFER ACCEPTED, NO MORE SHOWINGS Q: We have seen agent notes on active MLS listings that state “Offer Accepted, No More Showings”. These properties are not out of attorney review. We have been taught that until a property is out of attorney review it has to be shown or put as “Under Contract” in the MLS. Has this changed and is it allowed? If a seller states that they do not want more showings, is there something for them to sign?
A: Nothing has changed. There is no specific document for sellers to sign indicating that they don’t want to entertain any further offers. Only after attorney review can it be marked “under contract.”
PREPAID RENT Q: Can rent be prepaid by a tenant in NJ?
A: Any prepaid funds held to secure future rents are
considered to be part of the security deposit. This includes the last month’s rent. It does not matter how the prepaid funds are labeled. The courts have determined that advanced rents in excess of one-andone-half times the monthly rental payment violate the Security Deposit Law. The landlord may only require one and one-half times the tenant’s monthly rent as security and the first month’s rent at the inception of the lease. The landlord may not require more than two and one-half times the monthly rent at the inception of the lease, this includes the security deposit and the first month’s rent.
CRIMINAL HISTORY FOR POTENTIAL TENANTS Q: I am a listing agent who has a landlord that wants me to consider criminal records before presenting potential tenants— is this allowed?
A: The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
does not prohibit the use of criminal history-based policies. However, it is recommended that the agent use many different criteria, such as employment history, financial ability, etc. since any one criteria may have a disparate impact on a member of a protected class and in 2015 the United States Supreme Court held that a member of a protected class could bring a disparate impact claim under the Fair Housing Act. Policies should not be blanket or arbitrary and should be tailored to serve a substantial legitimate and nondiscriminatory interest of the housing provider and achieve the fundamental interest in ensuring resident safety and protecting property. On Friday, June 18, 2021 Governor Murphy signed into law the “Fair Chance in Housing Act.” The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development does not prohibit the use of criminal history-based policies. However, S250/A1919, which is known as the “Fair Chance in Housing Act,” was signed into law by the Governor of New Jersey. Under this law, with certain exceptions, a landlord and its agent in New Jersey are prohibited from requiring a potential tenant to complete any housing application that includes any inquiries regarding the tenant’s criminal record prior to there being a “conditional offer,” which is defined as “ an offer to rent or lease a rental dwelling unit to an applicant that is contingent on a subsequent inquiry into the applicant’s criminal record, or any other eligibility criteria that the housing provider may lawfully utilize.” This law goes into effect seven (7) months from when it was signed. In the interim, it is recommended that the agent use many different criteria, such as employment history, financial ability, etc. since any one criteria may have a disparate impact on a member of a protected class and, in 2015, the United States Supreme Court held that a member of a protected class could bring a disparate impact claim under the Fair Housing Act.
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 17
Homeownership Myths Debunked BY PAMELA BABCOCK
ou’re considering buying your first home. Congratulations! It’s a big step and an investment that will hopefully bring you happiness and help you build equity for years to come. Before you start perusing listings, however, it pays to understand a few home buying misconceptions:
Owning isn’t always better than renting.
Consider how long you plan to live in the home and whether you’re prepared to deal with all the responsibilities. “While you can hire someone to do your yard,” in most cases it’s up to you to replace your roof, heating system and to tackle plumbing problems, said Sue Adler, Realtor® of the Sue Adler Team Keller Williams Realty Premier Properties in Short Hills. One exception is in homeowner association communities where some maintenance may be covered but there are annual fees that come with it. If you’re planning to be in the home more than a few years, Adler recommends buying so you can lock in historically low interest rates. Janen Ardia, Realtor® and broker/owner of RE/MAX Heritage Properties in Chester, adds renters on the fence may find their monthly mortgage would cost less than they’re currently spending on rent. She encourages potential buyers to talk to a mortgage representative to find out whether they qualify for a mortgage and what their monthly payment would be. “This should be done as soon as possible so if there 18 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
are issues that need to be addressed on their credit history, they can work with the mortgage company to correct them and move forward to their purchase,” said Ardia.
Reality TV is a realistic depiction of homeownership.
House-flipping shows make renovations look easy, but material and labor costs are often far pricier than what’s depicted. “Don’t base your repairs budget off of these shows,” said Adler. Episodes often make it look like every buyer finds three homes that fit their needs perfectly and simply must choose their favorite, but that’s not so in today’s competitive market. “Hot houses in any market will have multiple offers, and you need to go in strong with price and terms to get a house,” said Adler. Also, you’ll pay a premium for homes that look like reality TV “afters,” so be ready to look “past decor and minor cosmetics for the hidden gems,” said Adler. Recommend the National Association of Realtors® show “First-Time Buyer,” which is now on Hulu, to your clients for a realistic depiction of the home-buying process.
If I own my own home I can do whatever I want. You probably can blast your stereo at 2 a.m. if you live on 10 acres in rural Sussex County, but if you’re in a high-rise
down for Veterans Affairs loans and as little as 3.5 percent down option for FHA loans. In recent years, so-called physicians loans have become very popular and are “a great way for new doctors to buy a property,” according to Jeanne “Lisa” Wolschina, a Realtor® and broker salesperson with Lisa Wolschina & Associates at Keller Williams Haddonfield. “Banks know that physicians will be making a great salary in the future so they are willing to overlook the enormous debt many doctors have from medical school.”
We need cash for closing costs.
Some mortgages allow buyers to roll some closing costs into their new loan. Contingencies and seller concessions are rare in a hot market, but a buyer may ask a seller to pay a portion of the closing costs to make a more competitive offer. “This helps buyers without much cash left over for closing costs to increase their price,” said Ardia.
The housing market’s too hot to buy.
Low inventory has meant multiple offers but don’t let that stop you from home shopping. If you love the property and are happy with the numbers, there’s truly no bad time to buy, particularly when rates are at historic lows.
I’m good at DIY stuff so I can skip having the property inspected.
Having an expert opinion is invaluable. “It doesn’t matter how handy you are, you still cannot tell if there is an underground oil tank buried or if radon levels are high,” said Wolschina. “You need experts to identify those very important, and unfortunately, very costly, inspection issues. I would never advise a buyer to skip an inspection.” Jersey City condo, that could be a problem. Same goes for major remodeling or additions, since you’ll have to follow zoning guidelines.
My credit has to be stellar.
Having a credit score of 620 or higher should qualify you for a conventional mortgage and help you get a better rate, according to NerdWallet, but government-backed loans may be an option if you have a lower score. Lenders will often work with you upfront on how you can improve your credit before applying for a mortgage and can help you obtain a loan that suits your financial situation.
I need a 20 percent down payment.
Putting 20 percent down helps you avoid private mortgage insurance, but there are other options, including 0 percent
I can handle everything on my own.
Agents often hear about listings before they hit the market, and have plenty of experience dealing with issues that pop up during a sale. They also have a network of mortgage lenders and attorneys who can hold your hand along the way. Realtors® are a valuable resource, especially for first time buyers who can easily be overwhelmed. “The general public would be shocked to learn all that goes into getting a transaction to the closing table,” Wolschina said. “From the moment you make an offer to the day you get the keys in your hands, there are about 12 entities that have their hands in the transaction. A Realtor® helps make sure all of those pieces come together and no balls are dropped.”
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 19
Highlighting the Waterfront Neighborhood BY ERIN McFEETERS
ersey City boasts beautiful Manhattan skyline views, diverse neighborhoods, top-notch eats, and is a financial technology powerhouse. The city, dedicated to affordable housing, diversity and inclusion, and sustainability, is a great spot for both first-time buyers and families in need of more space. The U.S. Census reports that a little more than 40 percent of Jersey City residents are foreign-born. “It’s very much diverse and very inclusive,” said Adam Weber, an employee at the Lokal Eatery & Bar, a restaurant sitting right on the Hudson River with picturesque panoramic Manhattan skyline views. Weber described the Lokal’s menu as comfort food favorites that bend the rules. It features French onion soup, fried ricotta gnocchi, and mac and cheese. 20 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
Jersey City has a small-town neighborhood feel but unmatched access to everything you need. You might think with more than 240,000 residents, you would feel lost in the crowd, but walking along brownstonelined streets and ivy-covered trees, there is a distinctly neighborhood feel. But, the brownstones come with a cost. According to the November housing data from New Jersey Realtors®, the median sales price for townhouses and condos in Jersey City is $576,000, a 2 percent increase year to date. The single family market in Jersey City experienced quite a bit of growth in the past year with the median sales price at $491,250, an 12.9 percent increase year-to-date. The substantial growth of Jersey City’s single family market aligns with much
of Hudson County, which has grown more than the industry anticipated with an influx of residents packing their bags to leave Manhattan. According to Choose NJ, a nonprofit organization whose goal is to bring more businesses into New Jersey, Jersey City has become the fin-tech capital of the
TOWN SPOTLIGHT U.S. The organization attributes this to its proximity to Wall Street, and more affordable housing than New York City. Extremely convenient access to public transportation makes it the perfect spot for commuters planning to head back to their Manhattan office in the new year. While the diverse restaurants, quaint parks, and shops make it an option for potential buyers looking for a neighborhood with character. For foodies looking for a new spot, Jersey City’s own Razza was ranked by the New York Times as New York’s best pizza…even though Razza calls the Garden State Home. Restaurants throughout the city are as diverse as its population—whether you’re visiting the Waterfront or visiting Liberty State Park for perfect views of Lady Liberty, it will not disappoint. Weber recently moved to the area from out of state and had reservations about being in the city. “I’m not originally from here, so it can be a little bit scary,” said Weber. “But everyone has been super nice. Anywhere you go, anywhere you turn there is somebody willing to help you.”
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 21
The Dangers of Wire Fraud: Help Protect Your Clients BY WILLIAM THOMPSON
NJ REALTORS® DIRECTOR OF TECHNOLOGY
uying or selling a home is one of the largest transactions most people will ever complete in their lifetime and nothing could be worse than finding out you’ve fallen victim to a wire fraud scam during that process.
How could it happen?
A criminal will identify your client as being in the home buying or selling process, they’ll send your clients an email to inform them of “updated wire instructions.” Your clients, to ensure the closing remains on schedule, will quickly do as instructed and in a matter of minutes their entire life savings are gone. According to the IC3 2020 Internet Crime Report, real estate related cybercrimes continue to be on the rise resulting in over $200 million in losses in 2020 alone.
What can you do to help protect your clients from this tragedy?
First and foremost, education is key. First time homebuyers are especially susceptible as they’re unaware of what is considered “normal.” Inform your clients exactly how, when, and who they’ll be receiving instructions from and provide a trusted method of confirming those instructions in person or by phone. Next, I would strongly recommend including the Wire Fraud Notice, part of the NJ Realtors® Library of Forms with every Contract of Sale, which not only offers helpful tips to your clients, but helps mitigate your own risk by having a signed acknowledgement of the dangers of Wire Fraud. To take it a step further, I suggest including a wire fraud notice in your email signature, such as the following provided by the National Association of Realtors®, “IMPORTANT NOTICE: Never trust wiring 22 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
instructions sent via email. Cyber criminals are hacking email accounts and sending emails with fake wiring instructions. These emails are convincing and sophisticated. Always independently confirm wiring instructions in person or via a telephone call to a trusted and verified phone number. Never wire money without double-checking that the wiring instructions are correct.” Finally, keep yourself protected! You, as a trusted client contact, are a target for cybercriminals as they can use your influence in transactions to scam your clients. Be vigilant with every communication you receive; be sure it’s coming from a known email or phone number. Never click on links or open email attachments that you’re not expecting to receive, they may contain malicious software that install on your device without you even being aware. Keep your accounts secure by using strong, unique passwords for every website and never share your credentials with anyone.
What do you do if someone you know is the victim of wire fraud?
First, contact their bank to recall the wire transfer as soon as possible. Next, file a complaint with the FBI’s Internet Cyber Crime Complaint Center, ic3.gov, act quick, the earlier an investigation begins the better the chance for recovery. Finally, contact your local FBI field office, fbi.gov/contact-us/field-offices, for next steps, the FBI is the investigatory agency responsible for cybercrimes. While no one is impervious there are simple steps you can take to help inform and protect your clients from the devastating effects of wire fraud scams.
First-Time Buyer Financing Tips and Tricks
BY MICHELE LERNER
or most first-time buyers, financing their purchase is the biggest hurdle. Share these financing tips with your buyers to help smooth their path to homeownership. 1. Do a personal financial review. Create a financial plan with a preferred monthly housing payment, available cash for down payment and closing costs, income and spending. 2. Start with an early loan pre-approval. Buyers should obtain pre-approval for a mortgage as soon as they begin thinking about buying a home, said Marc Demetriou, senior vice president and branch manager of Guaranteed Rate in Montville. “I prefer when a buyer calls months in advance so I can do a complete financial review,” said Demetriou “They’ll know exactly what they’re comfortable spending per month and how much they have for a down payment before they start the home search.” 3. Gather your information for a pre-approval. Firsttime buyers should be ready to fill out an application with addresses and employers, get a credit check and provide income and asset information, said Brian Woltman, branch manager with Embrace Home Loans in Basking Ridge. 4. Meet the minimum qualifications. Loans through the Federal Housing Administration generally require a minimum FICO credit score of 600 and conventional loans require a 620 score, said Demetriou. Your debt-toincome ratio, which compares your minimum monthly payments on all debt with your gross monthly income, should be 50 percent to 55 percent or less depending on the loan program, he says. 5. Gather your cash – but not 20 percent. The misperception persists buyers need 20 percent for a down payment. First-time buyers can put down as little as 3 percent or 3.5 percent of the purchase price for conventional or FHA financing and Veterans Affairs loans allow zero down payments, said Woltman. You’ll also need 2 percent to 3 percent of the purchase price for closing costs, said Woltman. 6. Understand the gift rules. About 28 percent of first-time buyers depend on gift money for some of their
down payment, according to the National Association of Realtors®. Gifts are only allowed from family members, said Woltman, and need to be documented by a gift letter, a copy of the check or wire showing the funds received and proof it was deposited in the buyer’s account. 7. Find about homebuyer programs. Ask your mortgage lender about special loan programs for first-time buyers. Woltman recommends checking with the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency to research homeownership programs. 8. Choose the right loan for you. If you have good credit and a low debt-to-income ratio, a conventional loan may be best. If you have less than perfect credit or a higher debt-to-income ratio, an FHA loan may work. A good mortgage professional can guide you and help you compare your options.
The More You Know, The More Listings You’ll Sign! Secure more listings in the spring market with education. Invite oilheat specialist and nationally accredited CE instructor Susan Janett to speak at your office’s next sales meeting. In just 15 minutes, in person or via Zoom, Susan will teach you everything you need to know about marketing an oil-heated property to WOW homeowners into listing with you! Get that listing contract signed! Go to OilheatPROS.com/nj to book a presentation or 2 credit CE class for your office. Paid for by the National Oilheat Research Alliance and the Fuel Merchants Association of New Jersey
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 23
FMA-Jan-Feb Quarter Page Ad-16773E.indd 1
12/21/21 2:00 PM
REALTOR® OF THE YEAR FRANCES BLAKELY
Fran Blakely has been a Realtor® serving clients in Bergen county for almost 30 years. She has been a RE/MAX agent for over 20 years and an active volunteer throughout her career. She is a Past President of her local board and has served as a member, co-chair, chair, and liaison on numerous Great Bergen Realtors® committees including the Community Service, Finance, Affiliate, Global Business, Awards, and MLS Users Committees. At New Jersey Realtors®, she’s been involved with committee work since
2015, most recently serving as a Division Officer for Professional Conduct in 2020 and Chair of the Risk Management Committee in 2021. She served as a National Association of Realtors® Director in 2019 and 2020. Blakely achieved the NJ Realtors® Circle of Excellence Sales Award in 1994, 1996-2009, and 2012-2020. She is an RPAC Major Investor and holds the CRS, PSA, AHWD, and C2EX designations. She is a proud member of the Women’s Council of Realtors®, National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals, and also serves asa Director for the New Jersey Mulitple Listing Service.
2021 LOCAL REALTOR®
OF THE YEAR AWARDS Shawn O’Brien Atlantic City and County Board of REALTORS®
Robert Durso Metro Centre Association of REALTORS®
Carol Menz Cape May County Association of REALTORS®
Wendy Smith Monmouth Ocean Regional REALTORS®
Susan LaRue CORE Association of REALTORS®
Patricia Romano NEXUS Association of REALTORS®
Nehemias Borrero Cumberland County Board of REALTORS®
Melissa Florance-Lynch North Central Jersey Association of REALTORS®
Frances Blakely Greater Bergen REALTORS®
Frank Shoemaker Ocean City Board of REALTORS®
Carlos Jesus Liberty Board of REALTORS®
Kathryn Loizzi Sussex County Association of REALTORS®
24 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
REALTOR–ASSOCIATE® OF THE YEAR TERESA BARBA Teresa Barba, ABR, SRS, CRS has been Realtor® for more than 20 years and is currently a team leader of The Barba Group at Keller Williams in Morganville. On the local level at Monmouth Ocean Regional Realtors®, Barba serves on the Associates Committee and is the Vice Chair of the NJ Realtors® Circle
of Excellence Verification Committee. As Vice Chair, she spends countless hours every year verifying applications and plans the celebratory events for winners. Barba’s favorite part about being a Realtor® is helping her clients through the home buying and selling process. She feels her clients are like family and wants to help them reach their dreams of homeownership.
REALTOR®ASSOCIATE OF THE YEAR AWARDS Casey Repetti Liberty Board of REALTORS® Teresa Barba Monmouth Ocean Regional REALTORS®
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NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 25
GOOD NEIGHBOR AWARD
FIRST PLACE KAREN DEMARCO
SECOND PLACE JANE MACNEIL Award: $1,500 Turn the Town Teal
Award: $2,500 The Food Brigade Karen DeMarco is a Realtor® with Coldwell Banker in Tenafly and is the founder of The Food Brigade Inc., a nonprofit corporation with a mission to provide food to local families and individuals dealing with hunger and food insecurity. DeMarco began her volunteerism journey after being diagnosed with breast cancer and undergoing a double mastectomy in 2017. While recovering, her neighborhood organized a meal train for her for several weeks. Her neighborhood’s kindness inspired her to pay it forward by cooking and delivering meals to others in her community who have suffered from loss of employment, illness, injury, and more. The pandemic hit and DeMarco cooked approximately 1,800 meals for seniors and the food insecure, and then formed the hunger relief charity, The Food Brigade Inc. Since its formation, the organization has distributed more than 2.3 million pounds of food to those in need in Bergen County. 26 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022
Jane MacNeil is a Realtor® with Turpin Real Estate in Mendham and has been president of Turn the Town Teal, a national awareness campaign for Ovarian Cancer for the past 14 years. She stepped up to the position following the death of her sister-in-law, who was the organization’s founder. When MacNeil assumed the role, the campaign represented just 20 towns. Today, it is represented in all 50 states, thanks to countless volunteers throughout the U.S. Beyond managing the organization, MacNeil regularly speaks with those battling ovarian cancer and their families to help guide them to resources and doctors, while also offering her compassion and understanding when they need it most.
THIRD PLACE ALKA ANEJA Award: $1,000 Humbled By Your Service
Alka Aneja, GRI, is a Realtor® with On Track Realty in Edison. At the peak of the pandemic, Aneja heard about a family that was in quarantine unable to cook—so she sprang into action gathering fresh food and delivering it to the family. Aneja realized there was a greater need in her community and soon others began reaching out to ask how they could help. Her one simple act of kindness turned into much more—serving meals to healthcare workers, delivering gifts to children in quarantine, and delivering food to the hungry. In December 2020, a nonprofit organization was formed, now known as Humbled By Your Service, whose goal is to fill the voids of society, wherever they may find them. Aneja now serves as president of the organization and her time spent furthering the nonprofit is unquantifiable.
2021 QUARTER CENTURY CLUB Rocio Lila Alsieux
Margaret “Peggy” Lefsky
Catherine M. Baker-May
Diane R. Durante
Mary Ellen Scerbo
Patricia E. Blaszko
Mary D. Forman
Mark T. Brown
Blossom K. Frankel Brodsky
Diane M. Brown
Susan Gallagher Brown
Linda Lee Sokerka
Frederick G. Buehler, Jr.
Cynthia L. Stadulis
Suzanne T. Stoinski
Olena Helen Tomlinson
Kathleen A. Houston
Roberta C. Inzalaco
William C. Rampolla
Madeline C. Rapp
Joan “Joni” Vicente
Rachel B. Conway
Jeffrey H. Kaplowitz
Kathleen R. Wicklund
2021 REALTOR® EMERITUS Mindy North
Walter Nicholson Jr.
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 27
24 3 5 1
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With flexible legs and compact size, this tabletop tripod is perfect for the on-the-go Realtor®. Whether you want to go live from your next open house or try out TikTok in 2022, this tripod is perfect for you.
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UBeesize 51” Extendable Tripod Stand with Bluetooth Remote for iPhone Android Phone, Heavy Duty Aluminum, Lightweight 4.5 Stars | 69,508 Ratings $23.99 Great for listing photos, selfportraits, and YouTube videos. If you’re looking for a versatile tripod to take better listing photos, give this extendable one a try. It goes from 17.5 inches to 51 inches for a wide range of photo angle options. It’s compatible with all the popular phones, plus a DSLR camera.
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B O A R D / A S S O C I AT I O N N E W S
Fall Fundraiser Supports Community The Monmouth Ocean Regional Realtors® Associates Committee raised $9,000 at its annual Fall Fundraiser and presented the funds to The Frances Foundation, whose mission is to bring smiles to kids fighting cancer, and No Limits Café, a lunch café that provides jobs and training to adults with intellectual disabilities.
Giving the Gift of Realtors® Donate $290,000 Warmth for Winter In December, Greater Bergen Realtors® Care Foundation In the fall, the Ocean City Board of Realtors® held a drive to collect coats, gloves, blankets, sweaters, and more for the Ocean City Ecumenical Clothes Closet. The Clothes Closet first opened in 1994 with a mission is to give free seasonal clothing to those in need in Ocean City. Since then, they have distributed more than 20,000 pieces of clothing each year.
and the New Jersey Multiple Listing Service donated funds to 36 non-profit organizations in northern New Jersey. This was made possible by the fundraising efforts of the Greater Bergen Realtors® Care Foundation, who has awarded close to $1 million since its inception in 2015. Greater Bergen Realtors® Care Foundation members present $290,000 to local charities.
CORE Celebrates 100 Years
MORR members present donation to the Frances Foundation.
Realtors® collect clothing for those in need.
The CORE Association of Realtors® celebrated their centennial this year. They were founded just three years after the state association in 1921 when there were more renters than homeowners in New Jersey. Originally known as the Trenton Real Estate Board, they helped advocate for real estate license laws in New Jersey, which passed just two months after they were established. Congratulations CORE! NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | January/February 2022 | 29
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