May/June 2018: VOLUME 4 ISSUE 3
THE TECH EFFECT
A RETAIL REVOLUTION PROTECT YOUR PRIVACY THE RISE OF DRONE MARKETING
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President's View: Working Together
12 Print in a Digital World 16 Selling a Lifestyle with Drone
CEO's Desk: Federal Issues That Matter
19 A Retail Revolution
Important Dates & Deadlines
Legislative Update: The Fate of Flood Insurance
New Jersey Legislative Bills The Truth About Technology and the Role of a Real Estate Agent
22 Town Spotlight: Princeton 24 Style Guide: Design Defined 26 Protect your Privacy 28 Board/Association News
10 Temperatures Begin to Thaw, but
Housing Inventory Remain Frozen
NJRealtors @NJ_Realtors NJRealtors
Sudoku puzzle solution:
26 NEW JERSEY REALTORÂŽ | May/June 2018 | 1
PRESIDENT'S VIEW New Jersey REALTOR ® A publication of New Jersey Realtors®
10 Hamilton Avenue Trenton, NJ 08611 Phone: 609-341-7100 njrealtor.com
BY CHRISTIAN J. SCHLUETER
Jarrod C. Grasso, RCE Chief Executive Officer COMMUNICATIONS DEPARTMENT Alexandra Hoey
PUBLIC RELATIONS AND MARKETING DEPARTMENT Colleen Oliver King
Director of Public Relations & Marketing
2018 OFFICERS Christian Schlueter
First Vice President
ADVERTISING SALES Laura Lemos | 973-822-9274 firstname.lastname@example.org DESIGN Rebecca McQuigg | Encompass Media Group email@example.com 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. 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. 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 advice or standards, NJ Realtors® recommends that NJ Realtors® seek legal counsel with regard to any specific situation to which they may seek to apply the article. New Jersey Realtor®, publication number 13260. Published bi-monthly each year. Member 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 Hamilton Avenue, Trenton, NJ 08611.
2 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
he months of May and June are dedicated to gratitude—showing appreciation for our veterans, mothers, and fathers. In the spirit of these special holidays, I would like to take a moment to thank you, the member. It’s the Realtor® who keeps homeownership thriving in our state and nation. Our homeownership efforts would also not be possible without our local and state association staff, volunteer leaders, officers, directors, and committee members. It’s the efforts of these individuals who keep the backbone of our association afloat on a daily basis. In the beginning of March, the rest of the Leadership Team and I traveled to Washington D.C. to discuss pertinent real estate issues with our congressional and senate representatives. It was an encouraging visit. Our representatives are aware of the size of our membership — 1.2 million nationwide and more than 50,000 in New Jersey — and hear us when we employ Calls For Action. This continues to be an effective way to send messages to our lawmakers. In May, we’ll travel back to D.C., along with thousands of Realtors® nationwide, to attend the annual Realtors® Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo. This is a great opportunity for our members to network and take an active role in policy and
advocacy. As our Call for Actions prove, Realtors® have a powerful stake in our economy and legislators are listening. Aside from improving legislation, we also want to enhance communication with membership. By the time you read this, the Leadership Team will have already conducted at least one of our Realtor® Town Hall meetings, where the mission is to connect with members around the state, particularly brokers and managers who have felt distanced from our local and state associations. The Realtor® community is a team and as we face hurdles on both sides of the political aisle, your input is crucial to our continued success. If you have a topic or idea you would like to discuss at an upcoming Realtor® Town Hall meeting, please contact your local board, officer, or director. You can also email me directly at Chris@homes4people.com with the subject: Town Hall Meetings. Together, we can make progress for our homeowners, industry, and state.
FROM THE CEO'S DESK
Federal Issues That Matter E
very March, the NJ Realtors® Leadership Team and our government affairs department travel to Washington, D.C. to meet with our state’s representatives. These trips are unique to our association and critical to our advocacy mission. It is a jam-packed few days of meetings and issue forums that encourage tough conversations and breed thoughtful consideration for our decision makers. This year’s trip was unfortunately cut short due to the second of what would be four nor’easters in March. But we managed to meet with every office of the New Jersey delegation anyway and were able to voice our concerns on several important issues. New Tax Cuts and Jobs Act Unsurprisingly, the New Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which was enacted in December 2017 and will affect residential and commercial real estate, was a big focus of the Leadership Team meetings. This tax law is currently in the hands of regulators who are deciding how it will be administered and applied to each state. Importantly, NJ Realtors® is focused on the 20 percent deduction on qualified business income for pass-through business entities and sole proprietors, the $750,000 mortgage interest deduction cap, the capital gains exclusion on the sale of principal residence, and the extension of the expired mortgage debt cancellation tax relief.
devastating effects of Superstorm Sandy. We seek long-term renewal because if the program lapses, NAR Research indicates a potential loss of 40,000 home sales each month. You can read more in-depth about the NFIP on page 6. Federal Mortgage Finance Reform We believe federal mortgage finance programs need continued support to ensure all homeowners have access to mortgage credit. Programs such as the Federal Housing Administration, the Department of Veteran Affairs, and the Rural Housing Service play a crucial role in the nation’s housing finance system. NJ Realtors® took the opportunity to push for FHA Lifetime Mortgage Insurance Premiums, FHA Condominium Rules Implementation, and consumer protections on Property Assessed Clean Energy loans, all of which help ensure Americans –– particularly groups traditionally underserved by the private market –– have fair homeownership opportunities. These are just some of the many important discussions that took place with our representatives. In May, NJ Realtors® will be back in Washington, D.C. for the Realtors® Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo, a fiveday event which I encourage all of our members to attend. We will spend that week continuing our efforts to advocate policy initiatives and continue building our relationships with our New Jersey lawmakers.
National Flood Insurance Program Over the past several years we have sent a number of Calls for Action regarding the National Flood Insurance Program, which affects 5 million homeowners nationwide. This also remains a top priority for NJ Realtors®, as it was only five years ago we saw the NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018 | 3
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I M P O R TA N T D AT E S
MAY 10 14
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Realtors® Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo, Washington, D.C. nar.realtor/midyear
NJ Realtors® office closed Memorial Day observed
NJ Realtors® office closed Independence Day observed
Realtors® Financial Literacy – Level 300 9 a.m.-12 p.m. njrealtor.com/financial
12 14 26
Executive Committee Meeting 11 a.m. Board of Directors Meeting 1 p.m. Realtors® Day in Trenton Realtors® Financial Literacy – Level 200 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
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L E G I S L AT I V E U P D AT E
The Fate of Flood Insurance BY DOUGLAS M. TOMSON
t seems like every few months our nation is faced with the threat of a government shutdown. While I could devote numerous columns and perhaps even a book to the reasons why we have recently been faced with so many, the question I am asked the most is: How does this affect real estate?
Two words —Flood Insurance!
When the federal government shuts down, it cannot issue any new flood insurance policies. Flood insurance is required for a mortgage in more than 20,000 communities nationwide. Over the last few years, there has been a growing private market for flood insurance, but millions of small businesses and homeowners currently depend on the federal program to protect their properties against flooding — the most costly and common natural disaster in the United States. Without the National Flood Insurance Program, more property owners could become uninsured and turn to the federal government for taxpayer-funded disaster relief and rebuilding assistance after major floods. The NFIP provides up to $350,000 of flood insurance coverage where required for a federally backed mortgage however, as currently structured, the NFIP is not financially sustainable. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the program is not charging enough in premiums to cover expected claims in catastrophic loss years, and has already borrowed over $30 billion from taxpayers to make up the difference. For these reasons, NAR supports a strengthened NFIP coupled with a robust private market to offer choices and maintain access to flood insurance in all markets at all times. NAR believes While Congress continues to debate a 5-year reauthorization and reform legislation, the NFIP has implemented meaningful regulatory reforms that could 6 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
improve the customer experience and encourage the development of a private market for flood insurance. NFIP Policy Refunds—The NFIP sets national average premium rates that overcharge some property owners while undercharging others. Private insurance companies can offer better coverage at insurance rates closer to the property based on specific flood risk. However, the NFIP does not currently allow for cancellation of NFIP policies if policyholders switch to the private flood insurance market. This creates a disincentive because switching means carrying two duplicate flood insurance policies. On March 27, the NFIP announced policyholders will be able to cancel after Oct.1, later this year, and receive a pro-rate refund of their NFIP premium upon providing documentation of private coverage and lender approval. Non-Compete Clause—Currently, NFIP prohibits its insurance company contractors from selling competing private flood insurance policies. On March 16, the NFIP proposed to strike this clause from the contract. Global Reinsurance—Reinsurance allows the NFIP to transfer some of the financial risk from U.S. taxpayers to international reinsurance companies. Last year, NFIP purchased $1 billion worth of coverage. As a result, the NFIP was able to borrow $1 billion less from the US Treasury to pay claims for Hurricane Harvey. This year, the NFIP decided to re-up and expand its purchase ($1.5 billion to date) with additional placements expected later this year. Letters of Map Amendment—NAR members are concerned that after paying mapping fees and taxes, each homeowner must spend $500-$2,000 on an elevation certificate to obtain a map amendment that removes their property. States like North Carolina and Minnesota already collect much of this elevation data
L E G I S L AT I V E U P D AT E using Light Detection & Ranging (LiDAR) for whole neighborhoods at once, rather than surveying each individual property one-by-one. The NFIP recently updated its Risk Map Technical Standards to allow property owners to submit LiDAR data in lieu of a $500-2,000 elevation certificate, which is an important change. Write-Your-Own Commissions—The NFIP provides an expense allowance to insurance company contractors, which represents roughly 30 percent of
RPAC of New Jersey
the cost of an NFIP policy. NFIP recently proposed to trim this allowance and pass through the savings which could help with affordability. While the above changes may seem small, they are steps in the right direction to keep flood insurance viable for so many homeowners. Congress must now reauthorize the NFIP by no later than 11:59 p.m. on July 31, 2018.
[$391,158.26] raised as of March 23
N E W J E R S E Y L E G I S L AT I V E B I L L S A1284 – Greenwald (D6) Eliminates the 1 percent fee and the 1 percent tax on purchasers of Class 4A commercial property transferred for consideration in excess of $1 million. New Jersey Realtors® Position:
STRONG SUPPORT We strongly support this bill that makes it more affordable to purchase commercial properties in New Jersey, which will help encourage companies to relocate to the Garden State and stimulate the commercial real estate market. Bill History: 1/9/2018 – Introduced in Assembly and referred to Assembly Appropriations Committee
A1839 – Lampitt (D6), Moriarty (D4)/ S1 – Sweeney (D3, Gopal (D11)
A3358 – Bucco (R25)
Encourages sharing of services; makes appropriations.
Requires Attorney General to provide active supervision of certain occupational and professional licensing boards.
New Jersey Realtors® Position:
New Jersey Realtors® Position:
SUPPORT WITH AMENDMENT
We support this bill encouraging the state to determine where tax dollars can be saved through shared services or consolidation, which would then go to the voters for approval with an amendment designating three pilot programs in each region of the state.
We support this bill requiring supervision by the Attorney General’s office of licensing boards to ensure there are no conflicts of interest in a board’s decision as the Real Estate Commission already has a Deputy Attorney General at all meetings.
Bill History: 1/9/2018 – Introduced in Assembly and referred to Assembly State and Local Government Committee 1/9/2018 – Introduced in Senate and referred to Senate Community and Urban Affairs Committee 2/15/2018 – Reported out of Senate Committee, transferred to Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee
Bill History: 2/12/2018 – Introduced in Assembly and referred to Assembly Regulated Professions Committee
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018 | 7
The Truth About Technology and the Role of a Real Estate Agent COURTESY OF REALTORS® PROPERTY RESOURCE
Despite the abundance of publicly-accessible property data from consumer-centric real estate portals, more homebuyers and sellers are seeking counsel from real estate agents, according to a report by the National Association of Realtors®. In fact, nearly 90 percent of buyers purchased their home through a real estate agent or broker in 2016—a dramatic increase from 69 percent in 2001 (2016 National Association of REALTORS® Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers). In the last 15 years, the “golden age of consumerism” has ushered in unprecedented access to real estate data, empowering homebuyers and sellers to potentially or partially manage their experience, yet the positive perceived value of working with a Realtor® has skyrocketed. The success measure for Realtors®, then, becomes how well they properly interpret the data on the client’s behalf, how responsive they are to inquiries, and how likely they are to seamlessly manage the total customer experience. All three of those assets require a commitment to adopting marketplace efficiencies through the use of technology.
The truth about technology It’s a big sweeping word that basically encompasses nearly every aspect of our lives. And, in real estate, it can be daunting. The truth is, though, that technology is simply an electronic way of 1) accessing digital assets that help consumers make informed decisions, and 2) automating our business practices or tasks in order to make ourselves more available and more valuable to our clients. Compartmentalized, that is, broken down into bite size pieces and choosing only those tasks essential to our cause, is the key to taking those first steps toward making technology an agent’s friend, not foe. 8 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
Educating consumers has become our best asset. We should use it to our advantage. In the real estate landscape, nothing has helped Realtors® become more responsive than mobile technology. The anytime, anywhere access to property data and reports has afforded agents even more opportunities to convey their value to consumers. One such digital asset is the app offered by Realtors Property Resource®. Available only to Realtors®, the exclusive portal offers an unparalleled platform of nationwide property data on residential and commercial properties. For example, within seconds of getting a call or text from a client, users can jump into the app, create a report and text or email it back to the client. The Platform has also just released a CMA tool on its app. Other cool features include the ability to use your phone’s location to search on-and-off market properties, valuations, tax and mortgage info, distressed data, mapping, market trends and more. In the end, real estate agents who recognize that technology is a tool that can and should be leveraged to support new ways of conducting business and building successful relationships will lead the way. Educating consumers has become our best asset. We should use it to our advantage.
Pat Combs, REALTOR® 2007 NAR President Grand Rapids, MI
It’s not just a black and white issue. Pat Combs entered the real estate business a few years after the passage of the Fair Housing Act in 1968. She recalled it being a “contentious time” for both REALTORS® and the public. Armed with fair housing training from the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION of REALTORS®, Pat faced off against discriminatory neighbors and homeowners. Ignoring verbal harassment and physical threats, she devoted her time in the Grand Rapids Association of REALTORS® to help in creating better training programs in partnership with her local Fair Housing Center to ensure that fair housing truly was for all. Now, Pat says, “We need to ask ourselves “what we can do as REALTORS®, as United States citizens.” April 2018 marks the 50th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act. We salute REALTORS® like Pat Combs who have driven NAR’s contributions to the fair housing movement, and we understand there’s progress yet to be made. Visit www.FairHousing.realtor to read more about Pat and to join the commemoration.
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | Mar/Apr 2018 | 9
Temperatures Begin to Thaw, but Housing Inventory Remains Frozen By Holly Fuller
he year is just getting started, but the low inventory trend continues to lead the way in 2018, according to data from New Jersey Realtors®. Fewer homes on the market continue to drive up prices, but the number of sales is fairly stagnant. In February, closed sales saw a slight downturn, but the year-to-date median sales price rose a healthy 5.3 percent to $268,500. Thirty-year fixed rate mortgages rose to the highest level since 2014, sitting now at 4.45 percent. First-time home buyers are weary of this pressure, but the rise could spur some on-the-fence buyers into action. Over a 12-month period, single family homes had the greatest number of closed sales, with an average of 6,866. Over the past
10 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
year, single family home sellers received an average of 97.6 percent of the list price. A very small increase in new listings didn’t help the total inventory, which was down 17.4 percent throughout the state. However, with selling season right around the corner, a rise in inventory is likely for the spring market. Properties spent an average of 75 days on the market in February, and while last year’s number was a week longer, it’s too early in the year to tell if this decline will continue through the rest of 2018. “The low inventory continues to be a concern we’re keeping a close eye on,” said 2018 NJ Realtors®
President Christian Schlueter. “But with the busy selling season closing in, we’re cautiously hopeful for a modest uptick. At first glance, rising mortgage rates might seem like a negative for the market, but we’re actually seeing the rates motivate buyers to make a move.” Here’s a more in-depth look at the three housing categories New Jersey Realtors® tracks throughout the state. Single-Family Market Closed sales for single-family homes were up a meager 0.3 percent year-to-date and the average percent of the list price sellers received was 97.2 percent. New listings in this category have declined modestly, and the total number of homes for sale dropped a dramatic 17.7 percent which meant the months’ supply was only 4.5. The median sales price of single-family homes has increased, as was expected with the drop in inventory. Townhouse/Condo Market Closed sales fell a minute 0.6 percent in the townhomes/ condo category year-to-date but the average percent
of list price a seller received remained a stagnant 97 percent. New listings in February saw a 2.2 percent increase, but for the year there was a minor 1.3 percent decline. In total number of townhomes/condos for sale, there was a significant 17.6 percent drop compared to this time last year, which brought the months’ supply to 4.3. The median sales price for the year rose gently by 3 percent to $242,000. Adult Community Market Overall, the adult community market is the most unpredictable and ever-changing of the three housing categories. Year-to-date, closed sales dropped 2 percent and sellers in this category received an average of 96.8 percent of the list price. New listings weren’t spectacular, at a mere 1.8 percent increase in February, and the housing inventory spiraled down by 16.9 percent with just 3.3 months’ supply. The median sales price for the month rose by 9.1 percent, to $174,500 but spent 71 days on the market. For more information and reports on the NJ housing market, visit njrealtor.com/data.
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NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018 | 11
PRINT IN A DIGITAL WORLD By Courtney Westlake
t’s fact that Realtors® need a digital presence to survive in today’s market. But, as many experts and agents point out, classic marketing methods can sometimes be just as effective when connecting with consumers.
Paula Clark, a Realtor® with Coldwell Banker in Hillsdale has been in the business for nearly 20 years and has always stayed ahead of the curve with personal branding. Back when her community paper printed ads in black and white, Clark convinced them to print hers in color. She also used video when flip phones outnumbered iPhones, and today, she’s continuing to use the latest digital trends. But she also has another trick up her sleeve: hard-copy marketing pieces. “I send out postcards that are high quality, 8x10 informational pieces two or three times a month. That’s huge because potential customers keep getting hit with my marketing,” says Clark. Physical and digital marketing is essential in helping a Realtor®'s brand prosper. Though social media and other online strategies are booming, tangible marketing is still important. “I personally still love direct mail. In a world that has gone increasingly digital, it really does stand out if your pieces are of a great design and print quality,” says Leigh Brown, CEO of Leigh Brown Instruction and international speaker and sales coach. “My guess is that it’s generational to a degree, but think about the number of your friends and family who have decided to get off of platforms like Facebook because they are tired of the fighting. Print is a great way to reach people.” An effective physical presence can give Realtors® an edge in an industry where many are focusing on digital. Facebook statuses and tweets can often be far less personable than physical marketing which, according to 12 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
the Data & Marketing Association’s 2017 Statistical Fact Book, can lead to higher response rates. The study also found more marketers are adding mailings to their strategy, despite the predictable turn toward digital. While costs are higher, scalability and return on investment are also strong when mailings are delivered to a well-targeted audience. Not only did customer response rates increase year-over-year by 43 percent, but prospect response rates more than doubled by 190 percent. “You can’t just send a postcard and not send another for four months,” Clark points out. “I use a special printing company, and we send 10,000 mailings a month. [My mail pieces] look the same as my website and my other marketing; I need to have consistent branding.” Clark uses these mailings as an opportunity to inform her clients about the market. “Potential clients need to see what you do to bring them value,” she says. Today, Realtors® need to employ a full arsenal of marketing strategies to stay afloat and find engaging, unique ways to draw potential clients in. “Video has definitely hit a tipping point on social networks as the preferred way to receive content,” says Rebecca Brooks, director of communication for Animoto, a platform for professional video creation. “I see some Animoto customers [in real estate] creating ‘Market Report’ videos talking about how the local market has changed in the last few months. I've also seen highly engaged videos agents have made around the best attributes of a certain town or area.” Recently, Brothers Commercial Brokerage, located in Red Bank, produced a short video with Animoto that was shared on Facebook with $350 spent in ad targeting.
The firm reached 32,900 viewers, 96 percent of which were local to Monmouth County. The goal of the video wasn’t to sell a specific property, but to communicate the value of starting or moving a business to Red Bank, says Everett Brothers, a digital and content marketing specialist for Brothers Commercial Brokerage. “We wanted to showcase how beautiful Red Bank is and why you would want to live and work here,” he says. “Using Animoto, we could make a square video, which is more effective and engaging on social media. We could control the transitions and the lower thirds and also add in voiceover text. A lot of times viewers don’t want to click and listen to the audio, but they will watch the text.” Though Brothers Commercial Brokerage saw immense success with their video, digital efforts are only one component of the firm’s branding and marketing strategy. Over the span of their 35 years in business, the firm considers its audience for marketing each individual property and project. “We do use traditional media, depending on the listing and where those buyers are,” Brothers says. “Whether running ads in newspapers or doing direct mailers or reaching out to different stock brokers, each property will have its own unique approach. We consider the best use for the space and where we should target for that.” Brother says it’s important to have a 360-degree media campaign that includes digital and traditional aspects because that reinforces the message. "It’s important to have as many touchpoints as possible,” he adds. Joshua Baris, a Realtor® with Coldwell Bankers in Fort Lee, isn’t afraid to experiment with different marketing approaches. For Baris, the goal of marketing is more about the long game of cultivating his brand and connecting with potential clients than about selling one particular property. For instance, when Baris produces a high-tech video with drone coverage for one of his homes, he puts a lot of effort into SEO and other tactics that will drive traffic to his website—NJLuxe.com—from the video. “I invest a lot of money in video and spend a lot of time and effort on them to get to the final result, but I’m not utilizing video for the same reason a lot of other Realtors®
in my area [are],” he says. “When I embed videos on [my] website, it draws traffic and helps optimize my site. So there are a lot more layers.” Baris creates custom websites for all of his properties and uses them to monitor what people are interested in. “I’m utilizing unique content to grow my website and improve SEO; all of this is continuously helping my sites grow, which increases the number of transactions I do,” he says.
3 TANGIBLE TIPS TO START BUILDING YOUR PERSONAL BRAND From Leigh Brown, trainer with Leigh Brown Instruction 1. Decide what makes you different from your competitors. “Read the book Start With Why by Simon Sinek and figure out why you are a Realtor®,” Brown suggests. “Are you an educator at heart or are you a master of confrontation? Do you provide concierge-level service? That's what your plan should start from and convey in a concise and clear way.” 2. Put your focus on what you can do for your clients. “There is too much emphasis today on 'I'm number one!' which does not resonate with today's consumer client,” Brown says. “When you brag about commissions earned, how does that indicate that you'll listen to the needs of each buyer and seller who call you?” 3. Be professional and respectable. Being on time for appointments and dressing appropriately are simple things that go a long way. “We're seeing more and more Realtors® embrace a very casual lifestyle, which is fine if you're going to the grocery store. But if you want potential clients to hire you and pay you thousands of dollars for your professional advice, why not dress like you're worth it?” Leigh says. “My rule of thumb is to dress '+1' for the market you serve.”
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018 | 13
“Social media boils down to engagement, so agents should be thinking about not only marketing for the homes they're selling but also their brand in general,” Brooks says. “Enhancing the time spent on the social media platforms you've decided to invest your resources in will pay off far more than approaching these platforms with a ‘what's in it for me?’ mentality. Social media is all about brand-building and flips the sales component of marketing on its head.” The ultimate goal of marketing and branding for Realtors® is to connect with the client. Implementing all of the technology in the world won’t impress a client who doesn’t feel like you care. “In this whole digital age, it can become very impersonal, and I want to make sure I still have that human connection,” Baris says. “I tailor my approach to every client’s needs because everyone is different.” Clark has also taken the unique approach of hosting in-person events to show appreciation for her buyers and strengthen relationships.
“My clients who buy and sell with me are considered VIP clients, so we do client appreciation parties,” she says. Clark recently hosted a wine-tasting party where her son, who is studying to be a sommelier, described each wine and paired it with dinner. A slideshow of each guest with their sold sign played in the background, which added a nice touch. “They loved it!” she says. With so many marketing options, it’s difficult to know how to start or where to focus. Many in the business agree that what matters most when developing and marketing a real estate brand is consistency. “Having a consistent personal brand is critical! It’s been said for years that clients call the agent, not the company. But if the agent doesn't have a brand reputation and a message, what’s to set them apart?” Brown says. “People are seeking ways to find commonality in an increasingly divided world. A brand that explains who you are and why you’re a Realtor® is what draws people in.”
ARE MADE BY THOSE WHO
REALTORS® Day in Trenton
June 14, 2018 Tickets available at njrealtor.com/trentonday 14 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
Grow your business by making second-home sales your first resort.
With more than 80% of vacation home and investment buyers believing that now is a good time to buy*, agents in almost every market can benefit from this exciting opportunity.
The Resort and Second-Home Property Specialist (RSPS) certiďŹ cation is the best way to receive education and marketing materials that attract this optimistic clientele, while gaining access to a vibrant community of professionals that shares practical insights and strategies.
Learn more by visiting www.NAR.realtor/Resort
*According to the 2016 NAR Investment & Vacation Home Buyers Survey
NEW JERSEY REALTORÂŽ | May/June 2018 | 15
Selling a Lifestyle with Drone Photography By Lindsey Getz
rone photography and videography can be a powerful tool for your real estate listings. After all, drones can showcase a property in a way that standard photos and video simply cannot. The aerial views are not only stunning, but they give potential buyers a much better idea of what the property has to offer. If you’re not using drone photography for your listings, you may be missing out on a valuable marketing opportunity.
walk—and you’re there. You’d never get that feeling with a regular photograph.”
Stephanie Liskowitz, a Realtor® with Keller Williams East Monmouth, says that a majority of her listings are in close proximity to the ocean or a golf club. She says in listings like these, it’s not just the home that is for sale, but what the location has to offer. Liskowitz says that nothing can showcase lifestyle quite like drone photography and video.
“What aerial photography can show is just how close your listing is to the downtown area, to schools, to parks, to beaches, or even the golf course around the corner,” Baine says. “It is a home’s surrounding that really defines the lifestyle the Realtor® is selling and the best way to capture it is with a drone.”
“Oftentimes when people are buying a home down at the shore, it’s a second home, and they’re not familiar with the area,” she says. “That makes drone photography even more important. A property might be a mile off the beach but with a drone photo or video, you can get a sense that it truly is an easy bike ride or
16 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
Ryan Baine, co-owner and founder of Osprey Perspectives, a New Jersey drone photo and video service, says that selling a home comes down to selling a location and a lifestyle, which is why he has so many Realtor® clients.
Of course, there are instances when you don’t want to show off the neighborhood, or you may have a small budget, or the property simply doesn’t call for a drone. Baine says this is not a service for every single listing, but if you have a spacious property or the surrounding area is deserving of a spotlight, then this is the best option.
Adding Video for the Full Experience
In terms of whether or not to use video, Baine says he certainly has a lot of Realtor® clients who do. An impressive listing or one that is close to exciting amenities can be made even more enticing with a short video about the property. “We’re living in a video age,” says Baine. “People like watching videos and they will definitely help a listing to sell faster. It shows well on Zillow or social media and will help you get more eyes on your listing, which can lead to a sale.” Baine says that video also helps a Realtor® build his or her portfolio. Sellers look to hire a Realtor® who is motivated and hard working and when they see an impressive marketing strategy that includes video, they are intrigued. “In today’s age, video is now the leading style of marketing,” Baine continues. “The concept of ‘virtual tours’ in the real estate market is almost obsolete. Nobody wants to see warped images—they want a real-life view. When we make a video about a property we take a cinematic approach to give the buyer a sense of what his or her life would be like if they bought that property. We might shoot some footage at the beach, around the golf course, and of course areas around the home. We’re painting a picture that allows their imagination to really take over.” Baine typically recommends a video be about one to two minutes long—people start losing interest if the video is too long and anything shorter will not showcase enough detail.
“We use licensed music that we pay for to complete the video,” Baine adds. “In the end, it comes together like a movie trailer for what that person’s life could be if they bought the property.”
The Value of Using A Professional
You might be wondering whether this is something you could just do yourself. Although the price of drones has decreased tremendously, there is a lot more to it than people realize. A standard drone may only cost several hundred dollars, but there is also the high-end photography equipment and editing software to consider. Plus, a professional is not going to be using a cheap drone. They’ll have invested in the best equipment for top-notch results. Not only that, but there are licenses, too. While a license is not required for personal use, it is required for commercial purposes—and real estate listings fall into that category, says Baine. In fact, Baine says there are some serious fines associated with flying a drone for commercial use without a license. According to the FAA, a pilot who is
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unlicensed is subject to a fine of $1,100 per occurrence/ flight where imagery has been used commercially.
If you’re looking to also produce video, the cost is closer to $1,000, Baine adds.
“More importantly, perhaps, the fine for the Realtor® who hires an unlicensed pilot is $11,000,” Baine adds. “Of course, if you’re an agent who bought a drone and took the photos or video yourself, you would be liable for both fines. Many Realtors® believe they are not commercial operators because they aren’t making direct money off their drone photography or video. However, that is a huge misconception since the FAA defines a commercial operation as being a furtherance of a business."
Liskowitz says that for the right property, drone work is really a no-brainer for her. She says that when you post drone photos, you see a huge spike in engagement and views. While she doesn’t use video on every property, she typically will for those that are upward of $600,000.
It behooves the importance of finding a professional who is licensed—as well as insured. It’s important to protect yourself and your business. “It’s rare that something could go wrong, but you still want to find an insured drone professional,” Baine adds. “For example, if a bird hits the drone and it falls and breaks a shingle on a home, you don’t want to be liable for damages.” Thomas DeFazio, a Realtor® with Chris Smith Realty in Spring Lake, says that hiring someone who understands the “dos and don’ts” of drone work is priceless to him. “Finding someone who you can trust understands the licenses and the permitting involved is so important,” he says. “I know there are regulations involved with flying too close to an airport—and I trust that my photographer has a good understanding of these regulations.” One of the first questions a good drone operator should ask is for the address, Baine says. The operator should then research the location’s proximity to an airport. “We’ve applied for basically all authorizations to fly near airports on the East Coast,” Baine says. “But it’s important that you know your drone operator is covered. The FAA does take a while to approve those authorizations.”
The Cost of a Professional
While it’s pretty obvious that using a professional is the way to go, you might be wondering what your investment would be. Baine says that his most popular package for Realtors® starts at $350. That gets you a licensed professional on site and edited professional photography with a 24-hour turnaround. 18 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
“Nothing gives you a sense of the property like video, so if you a have a listing where it’s worth investing in it, do so,” she advises. “We recently did a shoot where we showed off the house but also included video of the nearby town and beach. This way, people understand the whole package.” Liskowitz says that in general, she invests more in her portfolio and her listings than she does in marketing herself. “It comes down to where you want to spend your money,” Liskowitz says. “Personally, I spend less to market myself and more to market my properties. I feel if they are marketed well, it’s a reflection of my brand as a Realtor® and that’s where I see the most value.” DeFazio agrees that using drone work has improved his portfolio—and that’s incredibly valuable for future listings. “I think most sellers would hope that their listing agent was going out of his or her way to spend money in marketing—not just slapping it in MLS and hoping for the best,” he says. “You want to enhance the ability to sell the home, and drone photography can do that.” DeFazio says that he had one listing that he had been the third Realtor® on—and it hadn’t sold. Drone photography changed everything. “It was a great listing on a golf course and the property backed up to the fairway,” DeFazio says. “With a drone we were able to give a great perspective of the course layout. Even though I’d been the third Realtor® on that listing, I had someone there within the same day as posting those drone pictures. It made all the difference.”
A Retail Revolution By Pamela Babcock
he bad news for retail marches on: Sears is closing 103 stores. Walmart’s Sam’s Club plans to shutter 63 stores. Macy’s is closing 11, and J.C. Penney is closing 8, according to CNBC. And in March, Toys ‘R’ Us, the nation’s leading toy retailer, said it would go out of business entirely, closing more than 700 stores across the U.S. Make no mistake that the avalanche of e-commerce and evolving consumer market is knocking the traditional brick-and-mortar business model to the ground, taking commercial retail real estate with it. New Jersey is not immune. The exodus of major retailers has left growing vacancies and many traditional malls, strip centers, and smaller retailers that counted on bigbox anchors to drive traffic struggling to stay afloat. What will become of these properties? Do they have a chance of being filled? What kind of tenants could make the properties Internet-proof? And is there an upside to any of this?
A Closer Look
Karly Iacono, associate director of the national retail group Marcus & Millichap in Saddle Brook, said she expects limited development in the New Jersey commercial retail market and new construction on big-box retail to be “very limited.” Instead of looking for build-to-suit sites, tenants will be infilling space at lower rents and landlords will be willing to take reduced rents to backfill the space, often under $10 a square foot. “It won’t make sense to develop big box unless it’s an A location,” Iacono said. The supply of retail centers will also increase because vacancy will squeeze landlord’s mortgage payments. Increased supply, coupled with the rising interest rates, will drive down prices, she added. “Most clothing and big box tenants are not performing well, which is opening up options” for other types of tenants, Iacono said. Service and entertainment concepts are faring far better than most retail, as are
jax10289 / istockphoto.com
neighborhood centers in lower income areas and centers with “treasure hunt” tenants such as HomeGoods, Big Lots, and T.J. Maxx, according to Iacono. Kevin Riordan, executive director of Rutgers Center for Real Estate at Rutgers Business School, said he’s not surprised stores such as T.J. Maxx, HomeGoods, and TJX’s relatively new-to-the-U.S. store Homesense are weathering the storm because their pricing makes them “almost like the brick-and-mortar version” of Amazon and many people still seek the “tangible, physical retail experience.” They are willing to go to them knowing “it’s hit-and-miss.” Whether existing space should be leased whole or divided often depends on the market, front of the property, available parking, and how receptive local officials are to a drive-through “end cap” businesses such as Starbucks would need if it wanted a drive-up window. Another big factor is the landlord’s aptitude for redevelopment. “Dividing it up will always yield a higher return, but there is significant site work and carrying costs to do so,” Iacono said. Since a lot of long-time former tenants are likely paying below-market rates, Jason Pierson, president of Pierson NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018 | 19
Deeper Dive Some argue traditional, physical retail stores aren't dead but just need to readjust their ideas about consumers and their habits. “Amazon has, and continues to, define what the consumer should expect from a brand, online and offline,” said Maria Haggerty, CEO of Edison-based Dotcom Distribution, which provides fulfillment logistics for B2C & B2B e-commerce and multichannel brands. “The ease of online ordering, the fingertip and even voice-based access to an unlimited catalogue of products, combined with quick and cost effective delivery has changed retail forever. Day-to-day businesses that don’t adapt quickly to Amazon, e-commerce, and the impact of the ‘Internet of Things’” on consumers will be left behind.”
Commercial in Englishtown says, “some landlords are actually pretty excited” about the prospects of getting higher rents with strong-credit tenants. Pierson Commercial clients include Starbucks, 24 Hour Fitness, and Jersey Mike’s Subs. “The consensus is that a lot of the landlords are chomping at the bit to get some of these spaces back because they are under market, they are a little tired, and they can get a newer, more modern operator in the spaces,” Pierson added. Divided properties might appeal to quick-service restaurants (QSRs) such as Dunkin’ Donuts and Panera, which Iacono said are “expanding like crazy” in New Jersey. Fast casual concepts such as Buffalo Wild Wings and Texas Roadhouse “could also be a good fit,” she added. With large rectangular shells, there’s often an issue if a restaurant takes the frontage because that leaves square footage behind it less visible if it’s at the rear of the building. Good options for that space might be medical office, self-storage or warehouse, according to Iacono.
In April, Target plans to open a small-format store in a former Pathmark in the Troy Hills Shopping Center in Parsippany. Executives have said the smaller stores are more profitable per square foot than Target's larger locations. Meanwhile, many competitive brick-and-mortar retailers are trying to strengthen their online presence. Some once-only online retailers are even opening physical stores, such as New York City-based eyeglass manufacturer Warby Parker, and Amazon itself, which now has a growing number of small, brick-and-mortar bookstores with limited inventory based in part on shipping trends for that geographic area. Haggerty said in addition to immersive activities such as virtual reality experiences and escape rooms, divided space could also attract kioskbased showrooms and fit or “try on” centers where consumers could touch and feel a product before ordering it on a kiosk, through an artificial intelligence (AI) attendant or via a mobile device. Other shuttered stores could become local distribution centers for brands and service companies looking to improve their direct-to-consumer experience, she said. 20 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
Entertainment concepts are another focus for big-box expansion. Growing businesses such as Sky Zone Trampoline Park and iFLY indoor skydiving could help soak up the space, but height could be an issue since these types of businesses typically require 18 to 20-foot ceilings.
Repurposing and Reinvention
The departures of big-box stores could give some landlords the opportunity to reinvent failing malls and shopping centers. John Boyd, principal of location consulting firm The Boyd Company Inc. in Princeton, said “repurposing vacant
retail is one of the most exciting areas in commercial real estate today.” Boyd noted the successful rebirth of the once-faltering Bergen Mall in Paramus, in 2009, into The Outlets at Bergen Town Center, with a 200,000-squarefoot addition of retail that now offers contemporary retailers such as Whole Foods, Target, Century 21, and Nordstrom Rack surrounding an enclosed mall. Built in 1957 and one of the first shopping malls in the Northeast, the former mall even has a listing on deadmalls.com, a website that catalogues demolished or repurposed American malls. An 80,000 squarefoot addition, which will include a Best Buy, is now underway. There are also plans to transition once-languishing malls into mixed use—with smaller retail stores, entertainment, and even residential and office space. Kushner Cos. and Rouse Properties have proposed to reconfigure the Monmouth Mall in Eatontown, for new retail, recreational and commercial uses, and to add 700 rental apartments. At an April planning board meeting, the applicant’s attorney spoke about a "national crisis" in retail and the need for a new vision at the 1960s-era shopping center, which has been upgraded several times, according to the Asbury Park Press.
at Foxmoor in high-growth Robbinsville, which is home to one of Amazon's largest fulfillment centers, and has struggled for years to attract a signature tenant. Boyd said lawmakers should work to provide incentives to not only make repurposing affordable, but also to attract high-profile developers to work on such projects. In the end, Riordan, who previously was CEO of Crexus Investment Corp., a public commercial mortgage REIT and a senior managing director at TIAA-CREF overseeing structured securities, said he sees the glass as half full. As he tells students, the real estate business is always evolving. Sure, these are buildings and “buildings have almost their own hearts.” But when things change, such as peoples’ lifestyles, buildings have to adapt. “There are opportunities here,” Riordan said. “I wouldn’t say they’re today or maybe even tomorrow, but that’s what real estate is about. And if you stick with the fundamental tenets that if something is well-located, accessible, and in population areas, with the right mousetrap, you will attract the mice.”
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Debra Tantleff, founding Principal of Tantum Real Estate in Jersey City, said municipalities should think holistically about depressed centers and whether stores should be repurposed or torn down and the property redeveloped, particularly since mixed-use with ground-level retail and residential units above it could help satisfy the state’s affordable housing mandate. “I think there’s a significant opportunity,” said Tantleff. “The execution of these properties is going to be very dependent upon the willingness to think outside of the box, be creative, and recognize that the future user is not going to necessarily reflect the past use.” Turning retail into office space may be another solution. In 2017, Lord & Taylor’s iconic flagship store on Fifth Avenue was bought by WeWork. Boyd said co-working firms such as Regus and WeWork are expanding in highgrowth markets such as New York City, South Florida and Chicago, and he expects both to increase their footprint in New Jersey and increasingly target vacant retail, including shopping centers such as The Shoppes
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PRINCETON BY ALEXANDRA HOEY
Princeton University, EQRoy / Shutterstock.com
ake a stroll through any part of Princeton and you’ll pass a historic landmark. Since the mid 1700s, when George Washington won a pivotal battle against Great Britain, the borough of Princeton has been a historically important place in our nation’s history.
There is also, of course, Princeton’s idyllic downtown— a trove of restaurants, shops, and streets of colonialstyled bricked apartments. It is these assets, the history and ambiance, that attract visitors across the country and is enjoyed by many of its 28,000 residents.
Over two centuries later, Princeton continues its tradition of making history. Best known as home to Princeton University, some of the United States’ most brilliant minds have lived here, including Albert Einstein, whose house still stands on Mercer Street. At one time, T.S. Eliot, John Nash, and Woodrow Wilson also called Princeton home.
“To love Princeton is to love history!” says resident Michelle Walsh. Close to New Jersey’s capital of Trenton, Philadelphia, and New York City, Princeton is never far from important happenings that impact our state and country. NJ Realtors® takes a look at historical sites that have lured many for a visit or permanent stay.
22 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
Princeton Cemetery Did you know that Grover Cleveland is buried in the Princeton Cemetery? With tombs that date back to 1760, some other noteworthy gravesites include Aaron Burr, John Witherspoon, and Paul Tulane. Every year on March 18, locals, students, and community leaders celebrate President Cleveland’s birthday. Events like these, says Walsh, are part of what makes Princeton a treasured community. “There is this great sense of union and pride for Princeton and our history. It’s always fun when residents and students come together to celebrate.” Princeton Battlefield State Park Any history buff knows that Princeton is where George Washington and his troops won their first victory against Great Britain. Various landmarks still stand in the large, open battlefield, including the site of the
Mercer Oak—a tree that once stood in the middle of the battlefield and was destroyed by winds in 2000. This is where it is believed General Hugh Mercer— after whom Mercer County is named— died. Additionally, there is also a memorial for 36 unknown soldiers and the Stoney Brook Friends Quaker meeting house. The Ionic Colonnade, once the entrance of the Mercer Manor, overlooks the entire battlefield. Drumthwacket Governors typically reside in a state capital, but here in New Jersey, the governor calls Drumthwacket home. A beautiful 20-room Greek Revival mansion, this house is located on Stockton Street and is about 20 minutes from Trenton. Although the state’s governors only started to live there since 1945, this home has been standing for 184 years.
Princeton Battlefield State Park
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018 | 23
Design Defined | di-'zīn | di-'f ī nd | I
t's helpful to familiarize yourself with common design styles so when you sit down to write your marketing copy for your new listing, you have a wealth of information to pull from. Or, maybe your new clients are looking for the perfect blend of modern and rustic— understanding what they want will save you time and help you hit the ultimate goal: fulfill your clients' needs. It's not unusual for Realtors® to work with designers, just as they would with a home stager. Deborah Leamann of Deborah Leamann Interior Design in Pennington says she advises Realtors® "what needs to happen in real time" to help a home sell with regards to design. Her advice on when to save and when to splurge? "Don't rip it out if it adds character. I am a believer that old trumps new." Courtesy of Deborah Leamann Interior Design
Here are some top trending styles to incorporate into your design knowledge base.
Traditional | trə-ˈdish-nəl |
“Traditional interiors are often characterized with floral and damask patterns mixed with small prints, more ornate furniture silhouettes, and rich wood tones,” says Kylee Trunck of Havenly, an online interior design service that caters to clients large and small. “Rooms in this style are warm and inviting, and feel elegant and romantic (without feeling too much like grandma's house).”
Bohemian | Bo·he·mi·an |
A study by the custom furniture company Joybird, analyzed Google Trends data to find that “bohemian” was the most-searched design term in New Jersey. Bohemian style encompasses a laid-back vibe, which according to Elle Décor, is the “perfect blend of eclectic and fun.”
Coastal | ˈkōs-tᵊl |
Open and welcoming, this style is all about the ocean. HGTV says staples are "airy fabrics for window treatments, and the emphasis on nautical or beach-themed accessories such as lighthouses and seashells."
Transitional | tran(t)-ˈsish-nəl |
Balance is key, says realtor.com®. “Transitional style welcomes disparate styles—the traditional and the modern, the feminine and the masculine—in the same space.”
Farmhouse | ˈfärm-ˌhau̇s |
With a neutral color palette, this style is all about inviting, handcrafted furniture made from distressed woods and wrought iron, says Wayfair.com. "Think open shelving, whitewashed woods, mixed metals (especially copper and iron) and shiplap," Trunck adds. "Lots and lots of shiplap." 24 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
Mid-Century Modern | ˈmä-dərn |
A popular style for decades, millenials in particular are loving this design, says the National Association of Home Builders. Pop culture influences—like the hit Mad Men—brought this functional, style from the 1930s-1960s mainstream.
Industrial | in-ˈdə-strē-əl |
Havenly's Trunck says exposed brick, pipes and the "bones" of a house are key to this style. "When all pulled together, you get a room that feels truly cohesive and urban."
Courtesy of Deborah Leamann Interior Design Courtesy of Morgan Levy for Havenly
Courtesy of Deborah Leamann Interior Design Courtesy of Morgan Levy for Havenly
NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018 | 25
Protect Your Privacy
bombuscreative / istockphoto.com
t’s no secret that information posted on social networks, like Facebook, is not private. But in the past several months, it’s become increasingly clear how frequent social data is being used by outside sources and what exactly it’s being used for. Recently, Facebook has taken a lot of criticism for how the social network handled the Cambridge Analytica scandal, where tens of millions of users had their data from the platform improperly used. In early April, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified before Congress about the “breach of trust,” as he called it in an interview with CNN Money. In the same month, Facebook rolled out a tool to inform users whether or not their data was improperly collected by Cambridge Analytica: a first step in Facebook’s initiative to make the protection of user information a top concern. This is an important issue for Realtors®, as many use Facebook and other social networking platforms to market their businesses and widen their sphere of influence. As an advertiser, and as someone being advertised to, it's critical for Realtors® to understand security settings and the type of audience Facebook categorizes you in. 26 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
Just as you create a strong password and think twice before sharing your social security number, there are many other ways to protect your privacy. Using private browsing, password-protecting your technologies, and shredding confidential documents are proactive ways to avoid hacking. Advertisers create algorithms to create ‘audiences’ based on the information consumers supply to Facebook (such as age, location, interests, etc.) in order to advertise to people who ‘like’ the same things or are within a similar demographic. Facebook can even assume your political affinity based on what you post or ‘like’ in order to advertise to you successfully. To have more control over Facebook ads, you can review and edit your preferences. Under "General Account Settings" you can choose to download a copy of your Facebook data to review. If you go to "Setting" and then "Ads" in the left side menu, you can choose to turn off online interest-based ads, or refine what influences your ads so they won’t be based on your use of specific apps or website visits. Online security is certainly not new, but in the world of pixels and hyper-targeted demographics, understanding what data you’re putting into the world and what the world is reading from it can make all the difference.
NEW JERSEY REALTORÂ® | May/June 2018 | 27
B O A R D / A S S O C I AT I O N N E W S Monmouth Ocean Regional Realtors® The Monmouth Ocean Regional Realtors® donated $2,500 to the County Councils for Young Children (CCYC) in March. The CCYC works with the Visiting Nurse Association in Monmouth and Ocean counties and connects guardians with local leaders to improve the community for children in the area.
Bridget Murphy, VNA Chief Philanthropy Officer Bridget Murphy (left) and Jeannie Wheat, MORR Committee Chair
NCJAR Installs 2018 Officers
North Central Jersey Association of Realtors® held its installation dinner at the Hanover Manor on Jan. 25. Shown in the photo below, the following officers were installed: David Weisbrod, White Realty (back, from left); Alex Mosquera, Terra Realty; John Varriano, Coldwell Banker; Michael DelDuca, Berkshire Hathaway; Michael Pennisi, Coldwell Banker; William Flagg, ERA Queen City; Jerry Tuscano, C-21 Elite Realty; Wendy Worthy, Alpha Realty; Bill Hanley, Prominent Properties Sotheby’s; Jeff Jones, Amerisource Realty (bottom, from left); Mary Ellen O’Boyle, Prominent Properties Sotheby’s; Melanie Selk, Re/Max Select; Ilene Horowitz, Coldwell Banker; Dennis De Carlo, C-21 Award Agency; Angela Sicoli, C-21 Award Agency; Susana Saraiva, Coldwell Banker; Tg Glazer, Coldwell Banker, Chris Coccia, Coccia Real Estate.
Ocean City Board of Realtors® The Ocean City Board of Realtors® filled two vehiclesworth of donations for its annual Food is Love drive, a 2018 community service project that provides nonperishable items for families in need. Now in its eighth year, items were donated to the Ecumenical Food Cupboard which services residents in Ocean City.
George Rumer, Dave Carter, co-chairpersons of the community service committee Gloria Votta and Damon Bready Co-Chairperson of Community Service Committee, and Dotti Cianci, Executive Director of the Ecumenical Food Cupboard.
Warren County Board of Realtors® Warren County Board of Realtors® spent February collecting items for the Visiting Homemaker Service of Warren County, an organization that provides in-home care to permanently and temporarily disabled residents. Coordinated by the board’s Outreach Committee, toiletries, shower products, and household items were presented on March 14.
Staff of the Visiting Homemaker Service and Bill Cogan of Re/Max Town and Valley, Linda Simpson of Re/Max Town and Valley, Karin White of ERA/Burgdorff, and Jeannie Luongo, WCBOR executive officer.
28 | NEW JERSEY REALTOR® | May/June 2018
B O A R D / A S S O C I AT I O N N E W S Eastern Bergen County Board of Realtors® Over 200 Realtors® joined the EBCBOR and the Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA) North Jersey Chapter to celebrate the year of the dog at Exit 201 in Cliffside Park on Feb. 21, 2018. The event was organized by EBCOR’s Equal Opportunity and Cultural Diversity Committee Chair, Miriam Yu of Keller Williams Town Life, and Vice-Chair, Nathaly Castillo of Weichert, Realtors® Tenafly.
EBCBOR Names Rising Star The Eastern Bergen County Board of Realtors® announced Clifton resident Mohamad ‘Moe’ Sankar, a sales agent with Modern Realty Group in Woodridge, as the 2017 EBCBOR Rising Star Award recipient. Sankar was honored during the NJ Realtors® Circle of Excellence Awards Luncheon held recently at the Montammy Golf Club in Alpine. The Rising Star Award is given annually to a newly licensed EBCBOR member who is influential on closing deals, displays strong client and colleague interaction, participates in EBCBOR events and contributes time and energy to community and humanitarian services.
Have a few minutes? Challenge yourself!
Members from EBCBOR and AREAA
Sandra Solomon, PPSIR; Mohamad ‘Moe’ Sankar, Modern Realty Group, and Jorge Ledesma, CEOEBCBOR
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