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published by the northern virginia association of realtors速

May/June 2012

inside: 16

Agency FAQ


RU Ready for RPR?


Home Mortgage Options

Making the American Dream a Reality

How to help your buyers clear the down payment hurdle.

NVAR Realtor速 update

May :: June 2012 1

RE/MAX GENESIS Gene Sampson Broker/Owner 703-978-0800

Springtime Brings Sun, Potential Home Sales and an Action-Packed Calendar:



Volume 95, Issue 3

2012 BOARD OF DIRECTORS Chairman of the Board: Pat Kline, CIPS, GREEN, GRI, SRES, TRC Chairman-Elect: Jon Wolford Immediate Past Chairman: Karen Trainor Secretary/Treasurer: Mario Rubio, CIPS, SRES DIRECTORS-AT-LARGE Bob Adamson, CRS, GRI Julia Avent, ABR, CRS, GRI Mary Bayat, GRI Brian Block, ABR, CRS, e-PRO, GRI, SRES Heather Embrey, ABR, e-PRO, GRI, SRS, SRES, SFR Virgil Frizzell Suzanne Granoski, ABR, ASP, CDRS, GRI Sita Kapur, CRS, GRI Shane McCullar Thai-Hung Nguyen, ABR, CRS, SFR Peter Rickert, ABR, e-Pro, GREEN, ESRES Nancy Harvey Steorts, ABR, GREEN, GRI, TRC Publisher/CEO: Christine M. Todd, CAE, RCE Editor-In-Chief: Jill Parker Landsman Managing Editor: Ann Gutkin Associate Editor: Amy Larrabee Advertising Sales: Tracy Reynolds Graphic Designer: Wanda Ng Fontana Contributors: Beau Brincefield, Blake Hegeman, Mike Lafayette, Michele Lerner, Liz Milner, Sarah Louppe Petcher, and Dr. Lisa A. Sturtevant

Interested in advertising? Please call 703. 207. 3206 for information. The Realtor® update (ISSN 10988475) is published bi-monthly by the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors® as follows: combined issues for January/February, March/April, May/June, July/August, September/October and November/December. Periodicals postage paid at Fairfax, VA 22030 and additional mailing offices. Subscriptions account for $19 of each member’s annual dues. Annual subscriptions are available to non-members for $39. Subscription inquiries may be sent to the Realtor® update at the address below. Copyright 2012 by the Northern Virginia Association of Realtors®. All rights reserved. Postmaster: Please send address changes to: Realtor® update Northern Virginia Association of Realtors® 8407 Pennell Street Fairfax, VA 22031-4601 Telephone: 703. 207. 3200 | FAX: 703. 207. 3268 Web: E-mail: Advertising Info:

Is there Spring in Your Step? By Pat Kline, 2012 Chairman of the Board


pring is here and the market has picked up significantly. Hopefully, you are all “planting the seeds” with past and potential clients that it’s time to think about real estate. Consumer confidence continues to be a stumbling block on the road to recovery. We can help to change the public perception by getting the word out that now is a good time to list or purchase a home. At NVAR, our volunteers and staff are busy preparing informative classes and forums to help you to both increase your sales and be a source of information for your clients. Our diverse programs have something for everyone.

Questions on legal and finance issues? On Wednesday, June 20, NVAR is hosting its first-ever Legal Summit in Herndon. See page 17 for all the details. The Real Estate Finance and Settlement Forum is offering another fact-filled panel discussion on May 23 to explain how budget cuts, legislation and foreclosures can affect your business. Learn more on page 20. We really have a great cross-section of events: Young Professionals, Global Business, Small Brokers or Commercial. Our ethnic forums, open to everyone, are great sources for networking and learning, too. An added bonus is the great Realtors® and affiliates you’ll meet. I’m always impressed by the spirit of pride and fun that prevails at our events. And it’s easy to attend! Just check the interactive calendar on the home page for meeting, event and class dates. Everything going on at NVAR in any month is listed there. Then click and register! Legislative issues that impact our industry continue to rank high on the NVAR priority list. If you didn’t attend the NV/RPAC Bowling Night, you missed a great time. We filled up the place, won prizes, ate pizza and learned who really can NOT bowl (apologizes to my team). Attending the upcoming May 17 NAR Rally to Protect the American Dream is another way to show support for the “Realtor® Party.” See page 19 for more information. There will be other events this year, too, so remember to check that calendar! I wish all our members a prosperous selling season. Remember – NVAR is here to help. Join us! Collect your member benefits with spring in your step.

2012 Chairman of the Board Ads in Update magazine do not necessarily carry the endorsement of NVAR.

NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012 3 Alexandria (Old Town) 703-739-0100 703-739-8339 (fax) Annandale 703-852-3000 703-852-1685 (fax) Arlington 703-237-1100 703-237-1737 (fax)

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this issue: down payment




Chairman of the Board

Making the American Dream a Reality Resources and strategies your clients can use to help them clear the down payment hurdle.

6 Wanted: NVARtifacts; Letters to the Editor 7 NVAR Bowlers ‘Strike it Rich’ for RPAC 13 Community Appearance Alliance Recognizes NVAR HQ 18 NV/RPAC Major Donors Thanked at Tower Club Breakfast 19 Agents Need to Know: 5/17 Rally and Much More 20 National Settlement Agreement Addresses Misconduct Claims 28 Election Year Sales: Is There a Difference? 33 Untangling the Web of Home Mortgage Options 38 NV/RPAC Contributors; Dr. Fuller Delivers Market News to Broker Forum 40 Newly-Inducted Omega Tau Rho Honorees Announced 41 Commercial Development: Save the Date What’s Hot and What’s Not? 42 Education Calendar 43 Board Election Process Begins 4 4 Welcome New Members 45 Appraisers & Affiliates Directory NVAR Realtor® update

17 Legal Summit – 6/20 20 VRLTA Update – 5/18 Finance Forum – 5/23

Spring brings a full calendar of events and opportunities to NVAR members.


Legal Lines: Agency ABCs This is a continuation of Sarah Louppe Petcher’s Basics of Agency Law discussion from the March/April issue.


Government Affairs New laws affecting real estate take effect July 1, 2012.


Market Update GMU’s Dr. Lisa Sturtevant explains the impact of shrinking inventory in the Northern Virginia region.


Ask NVAR: Agency FAQ Practical tips about Virginia’s new agency law from NVAR, VAR and RAR attorneys.


Membership: R U Ready for Realtors® Property Resource? New member benefit gives Realtors® exclusive access to valued residential and commercial data.

31 Economic Summit – 9/13 41 Salsa Night – 6/27 Convention – 10/9

May :: June 2012

The views expressed in this publication may not reflect NVAR policy, and may be the opinions of the writer or interviewee. 5

letters to the editor

Wanted: NVARtifacts Share Your Industry Memories, Memorabilia, Mementos For An NVAR Chronicle

Letter to the Editor: Texts are Tops! Calendar Reminders Keep Member on Track

We recently received this feedback from a member who appreciates the automatic calendar reminders generated by NVAR’s new online interactive calendar system: Dear Webmaster, Thanks so much for the reminder! This is a great function to remind folks of the class.

roject n exciti n g p Be pa rt of a N VA R’s rich to celebrate g in ia . ort hern Vir N in y r to is h ca n mbers who We seek me cts a s a nd a rt if offer storie ou r rly days of from the ea otes or . T he a necd a ssociation of a il l be a pa rt m ateria ls w Fa ir fa x play in ou r is d e n li e m ti ibly a rs, a nd poss hea dqua rte y ou If . ublication keepsa ke p a b o ut re in g to sh a h ave someth r o k no w in gs were,” “t he way th plea se who m ig ht, of someone a m a ster@nv eb w ct ta n co

Praise for Fair Housing Coverage

A member of NVAR’s LinkedIn group shared her appreciation of Update magazine’s Fair Housing Month coverage: I would like to thank Jill Parker Landsman for the excellent and easy readable article in this month’s [March/April] Update on Fair Housing. I am going to see if there is some way I can reprint it and hand it out in my Fair Housing classes. Yes, Jill, we should all “heart” fair housing. Editor’s Note: We appreciate all member feedback on relevant member issues. Do you have something to share with our readers? Please email your letters to the editor, with first and last names, address and phone number, to We reserve the right to edit letters.

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May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

nv/rpac bowling

NVAR Bowlers

for RPAC 2.


In its second year, the Northern Virginia Realtors® Political Action Committee Bowling Night raised $5,000 from more than 50 participants. The March 26 event proceeds will be used to support Realtor® –friendly candidates and issues affecting the industry. Special thanks to 1st Portfolio Lending and New World Title and Escrow for sponsoring the evening of fun.





1. 8.


1. The Bowl America lanes in Fairfax were filled with Realtors® cheering on their team-mates during NV/RPAC’s 2012 Bowling Night. Tony Yeh demonstrates top form.

4. The “Gutter Girls” of Re/Max Allegiance strike a pose (l-r): Susan Mekenney, Jackie Lewis, Zinta Rodgers-Rickert and Rosemarie Johnson. Not pictured: honorary fifth Gutter Girl Rob Rickert.

7. NV/RPAC Campaign Co-Chair Thai Hung Nguyen (second from right) poses with bowlers (l-r) Natalie Phan, Man Ngo and Tuyet Bui, all of Westgate Realty, and Andy Tran of Wells Fargo.

2. Bowlers (l-r) Laura Farley – NVAR Staff Attorney, Sarah Petcher – NVAR General Counsel and Rhett Petcher from the firm of “Howe, Dewey, Cheatem and Wynn” render their verdict on which ball will roll the most strikes.

5. Top first-round bowler Lisa Goodfriend accepts her prize from 2012 NV/RPAC Campaign Co-Chair Delk Hamaker. Goodfriend’s team of Mike LaBrash, Angie Delboy and Connie Vanderpool also took top team honors.

8. McEnearney Associates’ “Mac and Ernies” make pink glitter crowns look regal (l-r): Mike Briggs, Heather Embrey, Candice Bower and Bob Adamson.

3. NVAR’s “Chairman of the Balls” Pat Kline (center) arrives with her Secret Service detail of (l-r) Pattie Mancini, Katja Hom and Kristen Maynard.

6. Chinese Forum team member Ying Lu (center) is announced as having the distinction of rolling the most gutter-balls during the event’s first half.

NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012

9. Participants were, ahem, bowled over by the spirited head gear of the Long and Foster “BowlerOvers” (l-r): Beth DiGilio, Anita Lasansky, Shawna Parde and Betty Collins. 7

legal lines

Part II:

Agency ABC’s: Understanding the Basics of Virginia Agency Law By Sarah Louppe Petcher, NVAR General Counsel

This is a continuation of the March/April 2012 Legal Lines article on Agency Law. To view the complete article, please visit If a Buyer Agent is unable to contact the Listing Agent, or fails to receive a response after repeated attempts to contact the Listing Agent, can the Buyer Agent directly contact the Seller? When is it permissible for a Buyer’s Agent to contact the Seller directly? The restriction on contacting the clients of other agents comes from Article 16 of the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice of the National Association of REALTORS®. Article 16 states that “REALTORS® shall not engage in any practice or take any action inconsistent with the agency or other exclusive relationship recognized by law that other REALTORS® have with clients.” In support of this Article, Standard of Practice 16-13 also states that “All dealings concerning property exclusively listed, or with buyer/tenants who are subject to an exclusive agreement shall be carried on with the client’s agent or broker, and not with the client . . .” This is generally known as the prohibition against ‘going behind the sign.’ However, there are some exceptions to this rule that are contained in the Standards of Practice under Article 16. Standard of Practice 16-13 The most common example is in the second part of Standard of Practice 16-13 that states: “Except with the consent of the client’s agent or broker or where such dealings are initiated by the client.” The Listing Agent can give the Buyer’s Agent permission to contact the seller. This permission can be broad or narrow, depending on the Listing Agent’s preference. One common example of narrow permission is when a Listing Agent states in MRIS that the cooperating agents should contact the seller prior to showing the property. I would remind everyone that this permission is limited to calling to arrange a time when the agent can show the 8

property to the prospective buyers. This permission does not extend to having a discussion about the terms or conditions the seller is interested in seeing in the contract. One example of broad permission is when a Listing Agent states in the MRIS that all contract negotiations are to be conducted directly with the seller. In this example, a discussion about the terms or conditions that the seller is interested in seeing in the potential contract is permitted. Standard of Practice 16-2 This exception allows agents to make general advertisements (mass mailings, telephone cold calls, etc.) as long as the advertising is not targeted to individuals who have been identified by a real estate sign, multiple listing compilation or other information source that indicated that the person receiving the advertising was already represented by another agent. Standard of Practice 16-3 You may contact the client of another broker to offer a different type of real estate service. For instance, if the other broker has an exclusive right to sell agreement, you may talk to the client about obtaining an exclusive right to lease or about an exclusive right to represent buyer agreement. However, you may not use information from an MRIS compilation to identify and target the clients of other brokers. Standards of Practice 16-4 and 16-5 You may not solicit a listing that is currently listed with another broker. If the other broker refuses to disclose the expiration date and type of agency agreement (open listing, exclusive right to sell, etc.) the agent has with the client, then a REALTOR® may contact the client to obtain this information. Please note that the exception only exists if the broker refuses to provide this information. If the information is provided, the REALTOR® would not be allowed to contact the client directly. Brokers may establish reasonable rules for releasing information about their listings that other brokers may need to follow (all requests must be in writing, must be made directly to the sales manager or main office, etc.), and these rules do not constitute a refusal unless they were viewed as unreasonable.

May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

legal lines

2012 NVAR Thanks Our Partners gold Article 16 and the related Standards of Practice have created a few exceptions to the general rule against contacting another Broker’s client directly. However, none of them appear to authorize the Buyer Agent to contact the seller when a Listing Agent fails to respond. Always first try to contact the Listing Agent at the numbers listed in MRIS. When that fails, contact the Listing Agent’s firm to determine if there are alternative means of contacting the agent (other telephone numbers, email, fax machines, etc.). Also try to determine if another agent in the office is covering for the Listing Agent (this frequently occurs when the agent goes out of town).


If that does not work, then contact the Listing Agent’s broker or sales manager, or have your broker make one of those broker-tobroker telephone calls that tend to resolve these situations. There do not appear to be any exceptions in the rules that would allow the Buyer Agent to ‘go behind the sign.’ While this answer is not the one most Buyer Agents prefer, these rules must stand until there is a Standard of Practice requiring that agents return phone calls. What is a non-agent? A non-agent is a person who does not represent the customer as an agent of that client. Rather that person is simply performing ministerial acts on behalf of the customer. As a result, there is no agency relationship formed between the person and the customer, and therefore the person owes no fiduciary duties to the customer. Ministerial acts are those routine acts that a licensee can perform for a person that do not involve discretion or the exercise of the licensee’s own judgment. They are activities that assist the transaction to go forward, rather than being a service to the individual customer. They do not require any expertise or substantive real estate knowledge. They may include transcribing the terms of an offer into the appropriate paperwork, opening the door to the home inspector, forwarding paperwork to the lender, forwarding offers and counteroffers to the other side etc. When working with a customer, be careful not to perform acts that might be considered a service to a customer. Such service might be interpreted as being contrary to the best interest of the customer. NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012



friend DOMINION Title Corporation 9

new laws

2012 Virginia Legislation Impacts Industry New Laws, Proposed Constitutional Amendment Address Wide Range of Issues Compiled by the NVAR Government Affairs Staff


rangling over the Virginia budget and social issues may have made most of the headlines during the 2012 General Assembly session, but legislators also approved dozens of measures affecting the real estate and development industries. Below is a list of the key real estate legislation from the 2012 session, as compiled by the NVAR Government Affairs staff. A full listing of all new real estate laws can be found at Sponsoring legislators’ names are in parentheses.

All legislation is effective July 1, 2012, unless otherwise noted.

Realtor® – Sponsored Legislation HB 206 (Miller) Duties of Real Estate Brokers and Salespersons HB 206 outlines the responsibilities of supervising brokers for each real estate branch office location, including contract review, training availability and written office procedures. Beginning in 2013, brokers will be required to certify that their firms have been self-audited for compliance with real estate law and Virginia Real Estate Board regulations. Those audits will accompany the firm’s license renewal. The bill also defines the terms “commercial real estate,” ”residential real estate” and “independent contractor.” Finally, it requires the Real Estate Board to establish procedures for carrying over excess continuing education credits by real estate licensees and to regulate the permitted activities of unlicensed assistants of licensees or the brokerage.

HB 210 (Miller), Regulation of Appraisal Management Companies Beginning July 1, 2014, those conducting business as an appraisal management company (AMC) in the Commonwealth will be required to hold a license granted by the Real Estate Appraiser Board. AMCs will be required to maintain a performance agreement and bond, and will be subject to increased penalties for law violations. Appraisers engaged by an AMC shall disclose the fee the AMC paid to the individual appraiser on the appraisal report. Appraisal management entities currently regulated by the federal government are exempted from this legislation. 10

Eminent Domain HB 5 (Bell)/ HJ 3 (Bell)/SB 240 (Obenshain) /SJ 3 (Obenshain), Eminent Domain Constitutional Amendment HB 1035 (Joannou)/SB 437 (Obenshain), Defining Lost Profits and Access SB 653 (Newman), Condemnation for Public Uses Passing the 2012 General Assembly were several measures on the issue of eminent domain. As a result, Virginia voters will decide in this November’s elections whether to amend Virginia’s constitution to reflect these changes.

The push for these revisions began with the case of Kelo v. Town of New London, in which the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Connecticut’s laws allowed for the taking of private property for economic development purposes. Virginia has never had such an eminent domain problem and is not a “Kelo” state. Currently, eminent domain cannot be used in Virginia to transfer private property from one person to another for economic gain. Despite this, in 2007 the legislature spent many hours crafting even tighter eminent domain protections. As a strong supporter of private property rights, Virginia Realtors® were key participants in that process. This year, the Realtors® and many other business groups opposed measures to include new language in Virginia’s constitution. Realtors® questioned the vague language that is included in the proposed amendment and believe that the language in the referendum is too broad and far-reaching. It will likely result in the courts debating and ruling on many cases, just as in the Kelo case. It will likely impede, and make more expensive, critical infrastructure projects such as the building of roads and schools. Realtors® urged the General Assembly to be certain of the impacts of this amendment before proceeding. The proposed amendment provides that “private property can be taken or damaged only for a public use, only with just compensation to the owner, and only so much taken as is necessary for the public use. Just compensation must equal or exceed the value of the property taken, lost profits and lost access, and damages to the residue caused by the taking.” Ultimately, voters will decide the outcome of this amendment at the polls on November 6. How well it works will be decided through court cases.

May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

new laws

HB 377 (Pogge), Condominium Sales at Auction This bill conforms the Condominium Act to the Property Owners’ Association Act with regard to properties sold at auction. Where the Condo resale certificate is made available for prospective purchasers prior to the auction, the three-day right of cancellation does not apply. HB 567 (D. Marshall), Tenant Water and Sewer Services When tenants fall behind on their water and sewer bills, localities may seek to collect these costs from their landlords. HB 567 seeks to reduce this practice by establishing water and sewer service in the tenant’s name. The service provider may require a deposit of up to five months’ service charges to cover any future non-payment. The service provider must also pursue payment from the tenant before placing a lien on the landlord’s property to cover the delinquency. HB 572 (D. Marshall)/SB 76 (Watkins), Owner Financing for Real Property This bill exempts sellers who extend a loan or credit to the purchasers of their property from licensure requirements under the Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System and Registry.

HB 1110 (Greason), Landlord and Tenant Law The legislation makes several changes to landlord-tenant law, including: • Allowing copies of the lease to be submitted in unlawful detainer actions rather than the original; • Defining “dwelling unit” and clarifying that tenants of dwelling units are notified when the unit is subject to foreclosure or loan delinquency; • Allowing the tenant to pay back rent, damages, costs and reasonable attorneys fees to the landlord to dismiss an unlawful detainer action; and, • Allowing landlords to charge the tenant for the tenant’s share of insurance coverage and the landlord’s administrative costs of providing that insurance coverage.

HB 1111 (Greason), Fees for Fire and Building Code Inspections/Landlord Tenant Act This legislation outlines what fees may be collected by a locality for building and fire code inspections. Localities may only charge fair and reasonable costs and cannot include overtime charges unless the inspection takes place outside of the locality’s normal business hours. The locality may contract New Laws, continued on page 12

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May :: June 2012 11

new laws New Laws, continued from page 11

Real Estate Signs HB 34 (Albo) Advertising within Fairfax County Highway Rights-of-Way Despite protracted debate in the General Assembly, at the end of the session, the rules for posting directional real estate signs in Fairfax County remained unchanged:

• signs should not be placed in the medians or in the vision triangle formed by two intersecting streets

However, the bill did clarify the enforcement powers of Fairfax County to remove illegal signs and impose fines, and County officials have indicated to NVAR that they will enforce these regulations. It is expected that Fairfax will only enforce major violations on weekends, but please remember that signs in the highway right-of-way have always been—and remain—illegal.

• signs should not be attached to highway sign posts, telephone poles or other objects in the right-of-way

Though this legislation was specific to Fairfax County, other area jurisdictions also set regulations on offsite directional real estate signs. NVAR maintains a list of these regulations on the Government Affairs page of Realtors® posting directional signs should check local rules to avoid any penalties for possible violations.

• no more than five signs may be used per property, and signs advertising the same property cannot be placed within 500 feet of each other beside the right-of-way of one street

NVAR urges members to obey area sign laws. Continued violations by a few members are jeopardizing the rights of all members to use signs as a marketing tool.

• balloons, flags or other moving items attached to signs are prohibited

with private companies to conduct inspections, but those inspectors must follow the same policies as local employees.

Other Key Real Estate Legislation SB 409 (Hanger), Recordation Tax on Refinancing Previous Virginia law applied the recordation tax to refinancing applications made with a lender other than the original, but exempted those that refinanced with the same lender. This legislation applies the recordation tax to all refinancing applications equally, regardless of lender status, but at a reduced rate. Rather than the current state rate of 25 cents ($0.25) per $100, refinancing will be subject to a rate of 18 cents ($0.18) per $100 on mortgages up to $10 million, decreasing by 2 cents per $100 for each additional $10 million in value.

See for all 2012 Virginia real estate legislation, including the following subjects: Condominium and Property Owners’ Association Act Landlord-Tenant Insurance Mortgage Lending Taxation Transportation Land Use and Development

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HB 1068 (Hugo), Commercial Property Tax This bill extends the current cap on commercial property tax earmarked for transportation at 12.5 cents ($0.125) per $100 of assessed value until June 30, 2018. This tax is assessed at the option of the localities encompassed by the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority: Arlington, Alexandria, Fairfax County, Fairfax City, Falls Church, Loudoun, and Prince William. Currently, Fairfax County, Arlington and Fairfax City impose the tax. HB 502 (Dance)/SB 34 (Locke), Receipts for Rental Payments This legislation allows a tenant to request a written receipt from the landlord when paying rent with cash or money order. In addition, if the tenant requests such information, the landlord shall provide within 10 business days a written accounting of the tenant’s debits and credits over the past 12 months. 12



May :: June 2012

FAX: 703.250.1210

EMAIL: NVAR Realtor® update

community appearance alliance

NVAR Headquarters Wins Community Appearance Alliance Kudos The Community Appearance Alliance of Northern Virginia selected NVAR’s Fairfax headquarters building for “superior appearance” honors in its 2011-2012 CAA Awards. Recognized as a founding member and supporter of the organization, NVAR received the award during a March 8 reception at the Northern Virginia Regional Commission offices in Fairfax.






WE’VE GOT IT! BB&T’s “CHIP” Loan (Community Home Ownership Incentive Program)



• Low 30 Year Fixed Rate NVAR staff and volunteer leaders were on hand to recognize the CAA’s 25 years of service to Northern Virginia and to accept a 2011-2012 Honor Award. Pictured (l – r) are: Jill Parker Landsman, V.P. Communications & Media Relations; Maggie Mueller-Tyler, Chief Operations Officer; Jon Wolford, Chairman –Elect; Pat Kline, Chairman of the Board; and John Muse, CAA President.

• No PMI mortgage insurance • $500 min. borrower contrib. + 2 mo. PITI Reserves • Min. score 680 at 100% LTV / 620 at 97% LTV • Loan amounts up to $417,000 • Income limits apply

“We’re proud to have helped establish the CAA,” said NVAR Chairman Pat Kline, who accepted the honor on behalf of NVAR. “After years of advocating on behalf of development that preserves the integrity of our natural environment,” Kline noted, “it is gratifying for our own NVAR home base to be recognized for our contribution to the Northern Virginia landscape.” Founded in 1987, the alliance advocates visual quality in Northern Virginia by promoting the concept of beautifying the community. Members of the CAA include architects, planners, Realtors®, real estate developers and citizen activists. In keeping with its educational mission, the alliance sponsors seminars to raise aesthetic awareness among Northern Virginia citizens, planners, builders and elected officials.

NVAR Realtor® update

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market update

By Lisa A. Sturtevant Assistant Research Professor, George Mason University Center for Regional Analysis

Inventories Diminishing and Supply of Lower-Price Homes Shrinking in NVAR Region


hile the market has been far from “typical� during the last few years, the unseasonably warm early-spring weather ushered in a boost in home sales in the NVAR region. The number of homes sold was up in February and March 2012 compared with the same months last year.

Prices continue to rise; the average sold prices in the NVAR region were up in 27 of the last 31 months. While sunny 70 degree weekends are part of the explanation, the brisker pace of sales and the continued price growth suggest increased consumer confidence and portend a continued strengthening housing market.

As inventories are drawn down, the availability of homes in the lower-price ranges is shrinking faster than overall inventories. One-third of the new listings in the first quarter of last year were priced under $350,000. In the first quarter of 2012, only 29 percent of new listings were priced under $350,000.

Prospective sellers who may have been biding their time have become more eager to list their homes. In the first quarter of 2012, the number of new listings in the NVAR region was up 6 percent over the same quarter last year. However, Prospective sellers home sales also have been up during the past few months, and this who may have been increased sales activity has begun to draw down the inventories of homes on the market. biding their time have

The share of new listings in the $350,000 - $499,999 range stayed about the same. Part of the reason for fewer homes in the lower price range is that the NVAR market has relatively few foreclosures and short sales in the inventory. And the share of the inventory that is foreclosures and short sales has dropped since the first quarter of 2011.

Inventories of existing homes have become more eager been declining fairly steadily each month since late summer of last year to list their homes. and the ratio of monthly inventories Potential buyers looking for more to sales has been on a downward modestly priced homes are finding a trajectory. In March 2012, there were more limited supply on the market. 3.4 listings per sale compared with 3.8 listings per sale in Furthermore, a small share of homes listed for under March of last year and 6.0 in March 2010.1 (For the overall $350,000 are single-family. In fact, in the NVAR region, Washington D.C. metropolitan area, the ratios were 4.5 in nearly 60 percent of the new listings under $350,000 in March 2012, 5.3 in March 2011, and 7.0 in March 2010.) the first quarter of 2012 were condominiums. (In the first These ratios might differ from what is reported by RBIntel, and is due to differences in how inventories are counted. These calculations were made using total sales divided by total end-of-month active listings.



May :: June 2012

NVAR RealtorÂŽ update

market update

quarter of 2011, 56 percent of homes listed for under $350,000 were condos.) In Fairfax County (including the cities of Fairfax and Falls Church), about half of the listings under $350,000 were condominiums. In Arlington and Alexandria, condos comprised more than 90 percent of the listings under $350,000.

When buyers are finding homes in the under $350,000 range, they are snatching them up relatively quickly. During the past six months, homes took an average of 68.2 days to sell in the NVAR region. However, the average days on the market was much lower for homes listed under $350,000. On average, these lower-priced homes sold in 58.4 days, while the most expensive homes took the longest time to sell, averaging 91.8 days on market.

to get into the game. These include potential move-up buyers who have been watching the market, waiting for the right time to sell their first home and buy their second. There may also be increased activity in neighborhoods that have not yet experienced sustained price appreciation. As we head into spring, inventories should rise in the NVAR region. In neighborhoods where it has been more of a seller’s market, there will be greater balance. Both first-time and move-up buyers will encounter more choices. The increase in supply may temporarily moderate price appreciation. In other words, as buyers encounter more options, they may find they have greater opportunities for negotiating on price. Ultimately, though, the increase in inventories signals increasing confidence among buyers and sellers. While uncertainty in the region remains—particularly with regard to the impact of federal budget cuts—the NVAR market will strengthen further as the weather continues to warm and we move into summer.

Right now, it is a sellers’ market for homes in the lower price ranges. According to data from MRIS, the ratio of sale-to-list price for homes listed under $350,000 was 0.98, indicating that these sellers are getting just about asking price. The limited supply of lower-priced single-family homes (i.e. smaller homes, townhouses) coupled with increased buyer interest should encourage more would-be sellers

NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012 15

ask nvar

Agency FAQ Practical tips about Virginia’s new agency law By Sarah Louppe Petcher, NVAR General Counsel, Blake Hegeman, VAR Legal Counsel and Mike Lafayette, RAR General Counsel

Q: When does the new law take effect? A: Changes to Virginia agency law take effect July 1,

days? Absolutely not! However, the buyer may be willing to sign an agreement for a few days, or for a specific property while getting to know the agent. If after a trial period, both the agent and the buyer decide that the relationship will be a good one, then the agent may propose a long-term Buyer Broker Agreement.


Agents should also point out that they are required by law to have the agreement in writing. A consumer education form is being developed to help agents in this situation.

2012. In the coming months, a variety of resources will be provided to help you adapt to the revisions, including videos, webcasts, articles, new forms and classes. I heard that I will need a written Buyer Broker agreement for every transaction. Is that true?

A: All licensees will need to have written agency and brokerage agreements with clients they represent. These agreements must, at a minimum: • • •

Provide a list of services that the agent will deliver; Provide a schedule of fees that will be associated with services offered, and when those fees are payable; and Provide a definite termination date.

Q: What do I do if the buyer wants to be represented by an agent but refuses to sign a Buyer Broker Agreement? A: The new requirement that all Buyer Brokerage Agreements be in writing does not specify the duration of the agreements. For example, suppose a buyer is looking for a house and knows that he or she wants representation, but is not sure from whom. Does that buyer want to sign a Buyer Brokerage Agreement tied to a specific agent for 180

Q: What if I represent a seller and an interested

buyer wants me to write the offer but does not want representation? Will I have to have a Buyer Broker Agreement with the buyer?

A: No. The new law does not force buyers to be

represented by an agent. In this scenario, if assistance is limited to ministerial tasks such as filling in the blanks on a contract, then no agreement is required. However, if the buyer does want to be represented by an agent, then an agreement must be in writing.

Q: I heard that the law dramatically changes the way dual agency works in Virginia. Is that true?

A: No. The disclosure requirements for dual agency have not changed. What has changed is the Dual Agency Disclosure Form. Dual agents will now provide, and have signed by the clients, a new form expressly describing the limitations on what dual agents can do for parties to a transaction. Please note that the new disclosure requirements apply only to residential transactions and that enhanced disclosure only applies when an existing client and new client of the firm are represented by the firm in a dual agency relationship. Q: When do I have to take the three-hour class to learn about these changes?

A: Agents must take a three-hour course on the provisions of the agency statute and the changes made in the legislation. This means that if your current license expires after July 1, 2012, you may take the three-hour agency course at any time. In fact, if your license expires in July 2012, you will need the course soon. However, if your license expires in February through June of 2012, you should wait to take the course until after you have renewed your license. You may take the course now, but you will need to take it again – for credit – in your next license cycle. 16

May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

legal lines

Q: How do teams disclose a brokerage relationship? A: While the legislature has not addressed the use

of “teams” in real estate transactions, we recommend that the names of all licensed members of a team be included in the Disclosure of Brokerage Relationship to Unrepresented Parties. Further, for dual or designated agency/representation, the agent’s name who is specifically assigned to the client should be inserted on the disclosure form.

Q: Do I need to enter into a written brokerage agreement to provide a Broker Price Opinion?

A: Yes. If you have been requested to provide a BPO, then that is providing licensable service to a client, and a written brokerage agreement is necessary to perform the service. You may elect to represent the client in an agency relationship (standard agent or limited service agency) or non-agency relationship (independent contractor). Please note that a more comprehensive Q & A concerning the new agency law was in development at press time, and should be available online at in May, 2012.

NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012 17

nv/rpac major donors

The View from the Top: NV/RPAC Major Donors One-on-One with Area Congressmen In appreciation for their generous support in 2011, NV/RPAC welcomed its Sterling R, Crystal R and Golden R investors to the Tower Club to share breakfast with our area’s Congressmen. In addition to some one-on-one time with Reps. Jim Moran (D-VA 8) and Gerry Connolly (D-VA 11), the group engaged in a candid discussion of federal issues including deficit reduction, current administration and House Republican budget proposals, and the potential for offshore drilling along Virginia’s coastline. The members of NV/RPAC give their sincere thanks to all of our 2011 Major Investors. You can join us at the next Major Investor Appreciation Breakfast by sending in your contribution of $1,000 or more today. Contact NVAR’s Government Affairs staff at or visit to find out more.


1. Major Donors (left to right) Virgil Frizzell – Long & Foster, Zinta Rodgers-Rickert – RE/MAX Allegiance, Pat Kline – Avery Hess, David Charron – MRIS, Mary Bayat – Bayat Realty and Bob Adamson – McEnearney Associates, survey the changing Tysons Corner landscape from the Tower Club terrace. 2. Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA 11) discusses Realtor ® Party issues with NVAR Chairman Pat Kline. 3. Rep. Jim Moran (D-VA 8; left) and NVAR Secretary/Treasurer Mario Rubio of Rubio Real Estate have an opportunity to network before breakfast.



May :: June 2012


NVAR Realtor® update

agents need to know

Agents Need to Know

NAR Introduces Member Value Plus Program

The National Association of Realtors® created the MVP Program to encourage members to take actions that will benefit the NAR membership, as well as to reward members for being an active participant in their Association. Active involvement is the best way to maximize your membership, as well as the best way to make the Association and all its members more successful.

The Virginia Housing Development Authority’s offers free advertising for property managers, owners and landlords of Virginia rental housing. Add and update listings with pictures, maps and information about amenities like schools, parks and hospitals.

Every two weeks, a new MVP offer will be posted. All you have to do is complete the specified action within the twoweek timeframe. After you complete the action, you’ll receive instructions and a code via e-mail to redeem your reward. Rewards range from free e-products to discounts on NAR event registrations, plus many other valuable incentives. To begin earning your rewards, visit, go to the “Current Offer” page and act now!

Free Virginia Rental Listing Service

Currently, there are over 4,600 units listed in the system by more than 1,600 property providers, with approximately 20,000 property searches conducted each month. Landlords at any scale can benefit from, whether you have one unit or hundreds. A toll-free call center is available for phone support. Visit or call 1.877.428.8844 to add or update listings.

Are We Ready to Rally?

NVAR Members to Stand with Realtors® From Across this Nation at May 17 Rally SentriLock Releases SentriCard® Utility 3 The newest SentriCard® Utility software, the SentriCard® Utility 3, features a number of improvements. This new software is PC and Mac compatible. To download and install, visit Key features and improvements include: •

cloud-based interface

simpler and easier to use

automatic updates

improved Internet connectivity

automatic SentriCard® renewals

more secure

And remember: don’t ignore SentriLock low-battery notifications. Visit to order fresh batteries online today!

NVAR Realtor® update

“It is a moral imperative,” said Pat Kline, NVAR Chairman of the Board about the upcoming NAR Rally. “You must go to Washington, D.C. on Thursday, May 17 to participate in the NAR Realtor ® Rally to Protect the American Dream. Our presence is essential. See you there.” Never before has the opportunity for Americans to buy and own homes been so threatened. After the last eight recessions, six have risen from their economic malaise because of reenergized home sales and increased construction. In a country bleeding from unemployment, housing sales in America generate more than 1 million jobs annually. NVAR can be a major contributor to the Rally since we can represent so many of our colleagues who are farther away. Learn more at

May :: June 2012 19

foreclosure settlement

Help Is On The Way!

National Settlement Agreement Addresses Misconduct Claims; Some Distressed Homeowner Relief Expected By Beau Brincefield


he five largest servicers of mortgage loans in the U.S. (see list at have entered into a $25 billion settlement agreement with the federal government and the attorneys general of 49 states, including Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia, to address allegations of improper conduct relating to the foreclosure process. The agreement provides for (1) the imposition of monetary sanctions against certain lenders and servicers who engaged in certain types of improper conduct that has harmed borrowers and (2) financial assistance to certain borrowers who meet the criteria for making claims against the fund, including victims of unfair foreclosure practices and (3) payments to, and support for, housing counseling and state-level foreclosure prevention programs.

It is estimated that the agreement will enable hundreds of thousands of distressed homeowners who have not yet been foreclosed on to stay in their homes as a result of revised loan modification criteria and procedures. Among the primary goals of the governments’ representatives in negotiating the agreement were: to provide at least some immediate relief to homeowners who are still struggling to avoid foreclosure on their homes; to bring badly needed reform to the mortgage servicing industry; to ensure that foreclosures are lawfully conducted in the future; and to penalize certain lender/servicers for their prior misconduct.

Allocations of Funds The settlement requires the five named lender/servicers to allocate a total of $17 billion of the fund to assist borrowers who have the intent and ability to stay in their homes while making reasonable payments on their mortgage loans. At least 60 percent of the $17 billion must be allocated to reduce the principal balance of home loans for borrowers

Friday, May 18 | 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.


VRLTA Update For Real Estate Brokers & Sales Persons

Are you up to speed on the recent changes to the Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act? FIND OUT!


Chip Dicks, VAR Legislative Counsel REGISTER ONLINE:


NVAR Fairfax Headquarters 8407 Pennell Street | Fairfax, Virginia 22031

Advanced registration required



, 20R1Fa2irfax 3 2 Y A M .m. | NVA

: 2 1 0 2 tion, line. egisla



L E FIN m T A T , State your botto s S t u E C ect get AL


ill aff l Bud edera nd more w AY23 F M w / o a H m s o c osure .nvar. Forecl > > go Panel Speakers:



COLLENDER  STAN Senior Partner, Financial Services, Qorvis Communications  MARY BETH COYA Senior Vice President, Public & Government Affairs, NVAR


Admission $75 NVAR Member/$100 Non-Member

Attorney at Law, Key Title

Approved for: 6 hrs Continuing Education Credit 6 hrs Post-Licensing Credit (3 hrs Legal Updates & 3 hrs Elective) 20


May :: June 2012

Distinguished Professor of Real Estate Finance and Director, Center for Real Estate Entrepreneurship, George Mason University

NVAR Realtor® update

foreclosure settlement

who are in default or at risk of default on their loan payments. Principal reductions will yield lower payments and will give these homeowners a fair opportunity to preserve their homes. The banks must provide at least $3 billion to assist homeowners who are not currently delinquent on their payments but who cannot refinance their mortgage in order to take advantage of lower interest rates because the loanto-value ratio of their home is “upside down,” meaning that the amount of their mortgage is higher than the value of their home. In addition to principal reductions, the banks must: allocate approximately $5.2 billion for other forms of homeowner assistance including, but not limited to: facilitating short sales, which allow houses to be bought and sold even though the balance(s) due on the mortgage(s) on the home exceed(s) the value of the property; providing unemployed payment forbearance, which will defer payments for homeowners who are between jobs; giving relocation assistance for homeowners facing foreclosure; waiving of deficiency balances; and funding for remediation of blighted properties. Banks will be required to notify eligible homeowners of the availability of these programs.

To be eligible for most of them, borrowers must: be current on their mortgage payments; have a loan-to-value ratio in excess of 100 percent; and have a current interest rate on their mortgage of more than 5.25 percent. The refinanced rate must reduce monthly payments by at least $100.

Imposition of New Duties on Lenders and Servicers Of major importance are the provisions of the settlement agreement which place certain new affirmative obligations on lenders and servicers and prohibit them from engaging in certain improper mortgage servicing practices that were once widespread. Lenders and servicers will be required to offer loss mitigation alternatives to borrowers before pursuing foreclosure. They are also required to increase the transparency of their loss mitigation process, impose time lines to respond to borrowers, and restrict the unfair practice of “dual tracking,” whereby foreclosure is initiated while the borrower is participating, in good faith, in a loss mitigation process. Specific new servicing requirements include the following: • Information in foreclosure affidavits must be personally reviewed and based on competent evidence.

NVAR’s Realtor® Shop is also ONLINE. Shop now 

Your one-stop-shop for real estate business products & accessories, 24/7.

continued on page 22


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NVAR Realtor® update

Herndon Service Center 520 Huntmar Park Drive Herndon, VA 20170 May :: June 2012 Store: 703.207.3215 21

foreclosure settlement Foreclosure Settlement, continued from page 21

• Holders of loans, and their legal standing to foreclose, must be documented and disclosed to borrowers. • Borrowers must be sent a pre-foreclosure notice that will include a summary of loss mitigation options offered, an account summary, a description of facts supporting the lender’s right to foreclose, and a notice that the borrower has the right, upon request, to receive a copy of the loan note and the identity of the investor holding the loan.

• Banks will have specific loss mitigation obligations, including customer outreach and communications, time lines to respond to loss mitigation applications, and e-portals for borrowers to keep informed of the status of their loan modification application. • Banks are required to designate a specific employee as a continuing, single point of contact (SPOC) to assist borrowers seeking loss mitigation assistance.

• Borrowers must be thoroughly evaluated for all available loss mitigation options before their loan is referred for foreclosure, and banks must act on any pending loss mitigation application before referring the loan to foreclosure; i.e. “dual tracking” will be restricted.

• Military personnel who are covered by the Service Members Civil Relief Act will have enhanced protections.

• Denial of loss mitigation relief must be automatically reviewed, and the borrower shall have a right to appeal the denial.

• Application and qualification information for proprietary loan modifications must be made publicly available.

• Banks must implement procedures to ensure the accuracy of accounts and default fees, including regular audits, detailed monthly billing statements and enhanced billing dispute rights for borrowers. • Banks are required to adopt procedures to oversee the conduct of foreclosure firms, trustees and other agents they employ.


• Banks must maintain adequate trained staff to properly handle the volume of applications that they receive for loss mitigation relief.

• Servicers are required to facilitate and expedite short sales of distressed properties. • Restrictions are imposed on unreasonable default fees, late fees, third-party fees, and force-placed insurance.

Payments to Victims of Wrongful Foreclosures Approximately $1.5 billion of the settlement funds will be allocated to providing compensation to borrowers who

May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

foreclosure settlement

were unfairly foreclosed on after January 1, 2008. Borrowers who were not properly offered loss mitigation or who were otherwise improperly foreclosed on will be eligible for a uniform payment, which will be approximately $2,000 per borrower, depending on level of response. These borrowers will be notified of their right to file a claim. Borrowers who receive payments will not have to release any claims and will be free to seek additional relief in the courts. Borrowers may also be eligible for a separate restitution process administered by federal banking regulators.

Payments to the Participating States The remaining settlement funds, approximately $2.5 billion, will be paid to the participating states. The funds may be distributed by the attorneys general to foreclosure relief and housing programs. Enforcement The settlement with each bank will be incorporated into a consent judgment that will be submitted to a federal judge for approval. Compliance with the servicing standards and financial obligations of the banks can be ultimately enforced through court process. Civil penalties may be assessed for violations of the consent judgment.

Releases of Claims Against Participating Lenders and Servicers The proposed release contains a broad release of claims for the banks’ conduct related to mortgage loan servicing, foreclosure preparation, and mortgage loan origination services. Additional claims based on alleged misconduct by the banks cannot be brought by the participating state attorneys general or banking regulators. However, the release provisions apply only to the named bank parties. It does not extend to third parties who may have provided default or foreclosure services for the banks. Notably, claims against MERSCORP, Inc. or the Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS) are not released. Other claims that are not released include violations of state fair lending laws, criminal law enforcement, claims of state agencies having independent regulatory jurisdiction, claims of county recorders for fees, and actions to quiet title to foreclosed properties. Of course, the release does not affect the rights of any non-party individuals or entities to pursue their own claims for relief. *Beau Brincefield is an attorney with Rich Rosenthal Brincefield Manitta Dzubin & Kroeger, LLP in Old Town, Alexandria. He was elected to the NVAR Hall of Fame in 2002.

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WE WANT YOU TO Lauren Brown and her team at Maid Brigade are true professionals that we love to refer our clients to . . . They keep us well stocked with welcome bags that are perfect for any new home owner. -Adam Gallegos, Arbour Realty

NVAR Realtor® update


Call 703-823-1726

E-mail: May :: June 2012 23

down payment

Making the American Dream a Reality

How to help your buyers clear the down payment hurdle. By Michele Lerner


May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor速 update

down payment

Gathering the funds for a down payment, closing costs and moving expenses, typically the biggest obstacle faced by first-time homebuyers, can sometimes be so daunting to renters that they avoid any attempt at homeownership. Among the many services Realtors® can provide prospective buyers is information about sources for down payment funds as well as the existence of loan programs for qualified buyers that reduce or eliminate the need for upfront cash. Potential buyers may already know about low down payment options such as FHA loans, but agents can also offer information about other loan programs and rules about gift contributions. Recommendations for a savings plan, borrowing from a 401(k) and even wedding registries for a home purchase may be welcomed by some prospective buyers.

Government Loan Programs: A Favored Option for Many

“VA loans are still the best program out there for veterans, active military members and retired and active National Guard members,” says Rick Eul, sales manager for Northern Virginia with Homestead Funding in Vienna. “Don’t assume that VA benefits aren’t available because you never know who might qualify. I recently worked with an army nurse who didn’t realize she qualified for a VA loan.” Bill Tessier, assistant vice president and real estate agent liaison for Navy Federal Credit Union in Vienna, says that about 45 percent of all their mortgage loans are VA loans, which require no down payment. VA loans also allow seller concessions to help pay for the funding fee and closing costs. “In some cases, VA loan borrowers can even get cash back at settlement if they made an earnest money deposit,” says Tessier. Another less well-known option with zero down payment financing is a USDA Rural Development loan. “USDA loans are based on a property address, and contrary

to what most people think, they are sometimes available in areas that are somewhat built up,” says Brad Carter, senior vice president of sales for Weichert Financial Services in the Capital Region. “These may be available in places like Warrenton, Front Royal and Gainesville, for example.” USDA loans are also limited by income and home price. They do not require mortgage insurance, but they do have a loan guarantee fee that may be wrapped into the loan balance. In Northern Virginia, first-time homebuyers, defined as anyone who has not owned a home in the previous three years, may be eligible for a Virginia Housing Development Authority loan. “VHDA offers affordable loans at rates that are slightly below market rates, including an FHA Plus loan, which is a second trust for 3.5 to 5.5 percent of the sales price,” says Carter. “The VHDA loan alleviates the burden of cash requirements for first-time buyers.” Currently the maximum gross household income to qualify for a VHDA loan is $120,900 for a family of two or less in Northern Virginia and $140,000 for a family with three or more. The maximum loan amount is $450,000 including both the first and second trusts. Borrowers must meet credit standards, take a homebuyer education class and be purchasing the home as their primary residence. FHA loans, which require a 3.5 percent down payment, are not only popular because of their low down payment requirement, but also because of lenient rules on gift funds. “The entire down payment can come from a gift from an immediate family member,” says Carter. “In addition, FHA loans allow up to 6 percent of the sales price in seller concessions, so that can be used to cover closing costs that are about 4 to 4.5 percent, plus to buy down the interest rate a little.” Eul points out that while FHA loans can be the right loan product for borrowers with a lower credit score, the mortgage insurance premiums that are required for all FHA loans have tripled in recent years. In many cases, conventional financing could be less costly than an FHA loan in terms of monthly payments, even if the borrower on a conventional loan must pay private mortgage insurance. However, while there are some exceptions, most conventional loans require a minimum down payment of at least 5 percent. “Conventional loans with a down payment of less than 20 percent require that at least 5 percent of the down payment come from the borrowers’ own savings,” says Eul. “If the continued on page 26

NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012 25

down payment Down Payment, continued from page 25

down payment is 20 percent or higher, the entire payment can be a gift.” Gift funds must be accompanied by a letter from the giftgiver that provides sourcing for the funds and expressly states that repayment is not expected.

Conventional Financing: Low Down Payment Options do Exist

Cash Accumulation Strategies

While not all lenders offer them, some banks and credit unions have their own low or zero down payment loan products. “There are lots of great financing options available, but this is not a return to the days of easy credit,” says Carter. “You have to qualify with a good credit score, bank statements and employment verification. It’s not hard to qualify for a mortgage; you just have to make sure you can truly afford that house now and in the future.” Navy Federal offers a zero down payment mortgage for its members up to $1 million, says Tessier. “Our loan is tailored after VA loans, but does not require a certificate of eligibility,” says Tessier. “The funding fee is 1.75 percent of the loan amount. There’s no mortgage insurance requirement, but we won’t finance above 100 loan-to-value. So either the borrower pays 1.75 percent out of pocket, or they can make a down payment and we’ll finance the fee.” Navy Federal allows gift funds of up to 3 percent of the sales price as well as seller concessions of up to 6 percent of the sales price. About 50 percent of Navy Federal’s conventional mortgage loans are 100 percent loan-to-value loans. “Many banks and credit unions offer low down payment or 100 percent financing products, but they are often limited by income and by loan amount,” says Eul. Such loans are often available to borrowers with good credit who meet maximum debt-to-income ratios and have an income of 80 percent or less of the median local income. The maximum loan amount in the Washington,


D.C. area for these loans is often $417,000. The advantage of these loans for borrowers who qualify is that they typically do not require mortgage insurance, thereby reducing the monthly payments compared to an FHA loan. Both B.B. & T and SunTrust are among financial institutions offering these home loans.

Borrowers who do not qualify for a zero down payment loan and who don’t have the option of a large gift from relatives will need to come up with other ways to accumulate more than $10,000 for a 3.5 percent down payment on a $300,000 home. One unusual way to gather cash for a down payment is a wedding registry. Some engaged couples and newlyweds may feel shy about asking for what they need most to establish their new household: cash. A wedding registry lets the couple post photos or messages about their dream and then allows friends and family members to donate directly through the site. Dana Ostomel, founder of, says, “The reality is that it’s taboo to ask for cash, but it is ultimately the preferred gift. Many people like the idea of their guests helping them save for a down payment so that when the time is right they will be ready and able to set down roots – the ultimate wedding gift.” Of the more than 1,000 wedding registries she has established in the Washington area, Ostomel says that about 15 percent are for down payment funds and another 15 percent are for home improvements such as a new roof. The average registry accumulates $5,000 to $10,000. In order to allow gifts from a wedding registry to be used as down payment funds, the borrower would need to provide a letter of explanation for the funds and a marriage certificate with the date,” says Eul. “As long as someone can prove that the funds are truly a gift, there shouldn’t be a problem.”

May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

down payment

If registry recipients wait 75 to 90 days after they receive the money to apply for a mortgage, the money will be considered theirs, says Eul. “Most lenders require two to three months of bank statements to check on income and assets,” says Eul. “If the borrowers wait until the money has been seasoned a few months, then there won’t be any need to provide proof of where it came from.” Prospective homebuyers may also want to consider borrowing down payment funds from their 401(k). “Borrowing down payment funds from your 401(k) is allowed, but I would caution borrowers to find out the repayment terms,” says Carter. “Your repayment requirements will be included in your debt-to-income ratio, so you need to make sure you can afford the payments. You need to do a cost-benefit analysis to make sure it is worth it.” Eul says that FHA loans do not count 401(k) repayments as part of the debt-to-income ratio, but conventional loans do. “There are no penalties for the withdrawal if you use the money to buy a house, but you must find out what the consequences are if you leave your company before you repay the loan,” says Eul. While the process can sometimes be slow, an old-fashioned savings plan is highly recommended by lenders for both the cash benefit and the discipline of living on a budget. “At Navy Federal, we are proponents of people establishing a systematic savings plan,” says Tessier. “While gifts and seller concessions are fine, we don’t want anyone to jeopardize their financial status by not having savings in the bank and proving that they can live within a budget.” Tessier says Navy Federal has a budgeting counselor on staff to assist members. He also says that homebuyers can boost their savings with an income tax refund, a bonus or perhaps selling a car or other items. Some prospective buyers may want to add a second job or earn extra money with overtime to increase their savings faster.

NVAR Realtor® update

“While a second job can be a great way to accumulate more funds in the bank, the income from a part-time job cannot be counted as part of the borrower’s income for at least two years,” says Eul. “Some people in the past have taken on a second job to lower their debt-to-income ratio for the loan qualification and then quit once they got into their house. But it’s a great idea if you just want to put some extra cash into your savings account.” Eul has other recommendations for prospective buyers. “If you plan on buying within a year, you can raise your deductions so your paycheck is larger and put the extra money in your savings account because you’ll get a writeoff for the mortgage interest deduction,” says Eul. “You can also make a lifestyle change, packing your lunch, eating at home, cutting back on Starbucks and being careful to use your bank’s ATM to avoid ATM fees.” Eul suggests talking to a lender before deciding to pay off debts. “I’ve seen buyers who have paid off all their credit card debt but then don’t have any cash for a down payment,” says Eul. “They might be better off keeping a little bit of debt and saving their money for a little while instead.” One common suggestion from lenders is for buyers to save the difference between their rent and their prospective mortgage payment to build their savings and to adjust to a more costly housing payment. However, Carter points out, with rents in Virginia rising and mortgage rates so low, some renters may find their monthly payments are the same or lower when they buy. While financing decisions should be made between a reputable lender and a prospective buyer, as a Realtor® you can provide invaluable advice that may assuage the fear among buyers that they won’t be able to come up with the cash to make their dream a reality. Editor’s note: See the article on page 33 about other mortgage finance options available to certain residents of the D.C. metro region.

May :: June 2012 27

election year sales

Election year: Does it translate to better Washington real estate sales? Posted in Where We Live, The Washington Post Real Estate Blog By David Howell

Howell is an NVAR member and executive vice president and chief information officer at McEnearney Associates Inc.

Washington area real estate agents hear it all the time: The local real estate market really picks up after national elections, especially in a presidential election year like 2012. But is it really true? Let’s get to the basics. There are 3,000 presidentiallyappointed jobs and 24,000 jobs on Capitol Hill. On the surface, the possibility of a change in 27,000 jobs in one year sounds like it would have an enormous impact on the real estate market, but let’s break it down.


Look at the White House. If there is a change in the Oval Office, let’s assume that every one of those 3,000 appointed jobs changes to a new person and that there are a considerable number of lower level staff positions that change along with them. Being generous, that could be as many 8,000 jobs – but let’s also consider the reality of Washington. Lots of the people who will fill those jobs already live here – call it the “Potomac Revolving Door.” Folks currently “out” in the private sector revolve “in” and those that are currently “in” revolve to think tanks and other jobs. That phenomenon – so reviled by folks elsewhere in this country – is part of what keeps our local economy strong. People who come here tend to stay here, particularly if it

May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

election year sales

was politics that brought them here in the first place. (I’m a good example. I came here to work for a presidential campaign in 1976. My guy lost – and I never left.) But let’s be generous and say that fully half of all of those jobs get filled by folks who move here from parts beyond. So we’re looking at 4,000 out-of-towners getting new jobs – and let’s finally assume that half of those buy homes in their first year. Based on our experience, these are very generous assumptions. That would be about 2,000 home purchases in the event of a change in the occupant of the Oval Office. On the Hill, 8,600 of those 24,000 jobs are “non-partisan” and don’t typically change when new members arrive in town, so there are roughly 15,400 jobs subject to change – if every member of Congress was replaced. And despite Congress’ low approval rating, the reality of our system is that typical turnover runs about 5 percent to 7 percent. The electoral tsunami of 2010 saw a 13 percent change in new members, so let’s use that historically aberrational level of change for our calculations. A 13 percent turnover of the 15,400 “partisan” jobs is 2,000 people, and let’s further assume half of the new hires come here from out of town. Staff pay on the Hill is such that only about half of that number could afford to buy a home in this area, so let’s further assume that every single one of 1,000 out-of-towners who can afford to buy does, and that they buy right away. So, that could mean 500 home sales if we see another major electoral shift in Congress. So, if there is a change in the White House and another historically major change in Congress, we could see as many as 2,500 homes change hands in 2013 because of the elections. And that’s being very generous. Based on our experience, we think that number will be considerably less. In a “typical” year there are roughly 45,000 home sales in Washington, D.C. and the contiguous counties in Virginia and Maryland. An additional 2,500 purchasers would increase demand by about 5.5 percent. To be sure, that’s a positive impact, but it’s more of a blip than a boom. Remember that there are other significant factors here. Individuals do not make a decision to purchase a home in a vacuum. Just moving to the area to take a new job – even a new job on the Hill or in the executive branch – does not cause an individual to ignore overall market conditions. There are market-related reasons that potential purchasers today are cautious. Also remember that while there may be new occupants of these jobs, these are not “new” jobs like we see created when a company moves here. This is simply turnover, so there’s no other major impact on the economy. Election Year, continued on page 32 NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012 29


R U Ready for Realtors Property Resource? ®

New Member Benefit Gives Realtors® Access To Valued Residential And Commercial Data By Maggie Mueller-Tyler, Chief Operations Officer

As association professionals, we strive to deliver member services that will help you operate more efficiently and achieve the greatest possible level of success. Realtors® Property Resource is one of those services. This National Association of Realtors® initiative involves a national database of information covering every parcel of property in the country. It is designed to create single-source access to data that will add value to the information available for members to use with their clients. A wholly owned subsidiary corporation of the NAR, RPR offers this member benefit to reinforce the core competence of its members.

“This is an amazingly innovative tool from NAR,” says NVAR instructor Dan Daniels. “RPR will change the way you interface with buyers and sellers by showing them information only Realtors® can provide in a way not previously available.” Offering property, listing, foreclosure, and ownership data, as well as search tools, reports, investment tools, trends and market statistics, schools and neighborhood information, RPR is a one-stop-shop for agents. “This program has all the information agents spend hours looking for right at their fingertips,” says Margaret Ireland, NVAR instructor. “It will help with clients moving to our area from anywhere in the

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May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update


agents and brokers. It will be available sometime this summer. Beta testing in a few select regions will begin in May, with a full release targeted for the third quarter of 2012.

country; it has a fantastic investor section and also covers distressed properties.”

Brokers will appreciate available company branding and custom-defined market statistics providing agent, office and company level metrics. This new resource is easy to learn and use. “RPR will change the way Free NVAR member training classes are you interface with buyers forming now. and sellers by showing them “I’ve included a demo in all of my classes, information only Realtors® and agents have logged-in and signedcan provide in a way up on the spot,” says Daniels. “RPR will not previously available.” make you a star with your clients, and it’s already paid for,” he adds. The benefits of RPR extend beyond the residential marketplace. RPR’s commercial application is currently in development and is being designed to leverage RPR’s nationwide, parcel-centric database to meet the specific needs of NAR’s commercial

The application will provide a singlesource point of access for Realtors®, with search features to include commercial, industrial, lease, vacant land, business opportunities, market potential and business analyses. RPR Commercial will combine licensed commercial MLS and Commercial Information Exchange (CIE) data with public records, neighborhood, geographic, and economic data to provide a rich view of the market and its drivers.

Visit to sign up for your free RPR introductory class today.


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NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012 31

election year sales Election Year, continued from page 29

Election Year 2000 2002 2004

Change in Congress 4 10 4

Change in White House Yes — No

Next Year’s Change in Sales 6.1% 7.4% -7.7%

2006 2008 2010

35 29 68

— Yes —

-23.3% 19.9% 0.9%

So what does the data show from past election years? On the heels of the major changes in the makeup of Congress in 2010, the number of sales in the immediate Washington area rose less than 1 percent. The election of 2008 brought a change in the White House and a change of 29 seats in Congress. There was an increase of almost 20 percent in the number of sales in 2009 compared to 2008 – so on the surface one might be tempted to say these elections had a major impact on the region’s real estate market. However, in February of 2009, Congress passed and the new president signed into law the first round of the homebuyer’s

tax credit, and the number of sales jumped nationally, too. In 2006, there was a change of 35 seats in Congress – and sales activity declined 23 percent in 2007. The accompanying table, going back to the election of 2000, shows that one would be hard-pressed to find a correlation between changes on the Hill and the White House and home sales. From our perspective, the post-election “boom” is a myth, and one should not base one’s housing decisions on the supposed impact of the election. Market timing is a pretty risky endeavor – particularly if one’s timing is based on politics.

Does Your Client Need Real Answers About Homeownership? Here’s The Starting Line.

Looking for a way to help new clients take that first step with confidence? Tell them about VHDA’s free First-Time Homebuyer Class. It’s a great way to learn the entire homebuying process from start to finish, and how to stay on track as a responsible homeowner. The class is offered in English or Spanish, in person or online. And it’s free, with no obligation. For information, visit or call 877-VHDA-123.

Virginia Housing Development Authority 877-VHDA-123 |


May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

mortgage options

Untangling the Web of Home Mortgage Options Finance Forum Panelists Reveal Range of Choices By Liz Milner


here are an incredible number of affordable housing programs in the marketplace, but trying to figure out where they are, what they offer and whom to contact is confusing. In addition to the mortgage options offered by FHA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, each locality offers its own mix of buyer incentives and regulations. The Real Estate Finance & Settlement Forum’s goal for its Wed., March 21 panel presentation was to help Realtors® understand these options so that they might deliver the highest level of service to their customers. This presentation, which took place at NVAR headquarters, featured a panel of local experts who explained the complicated and often contradictory requirements of our area’s affordable housing programs.

Untangling the Web of Home Mortgage Options Though the title of the presentation referred to a “web,” the panelists used a more appetizing metaphor, comparing the region’s affordable housing options to lasagna because there are many layers of options. The Virginia Housing Development Authority’s Janice Burgess said that finding the right affordable housing program is challenging because there’s no one set of standards. Each city and county has different rules and the GovernmentSponsored Enterprises (Fannie and Freddie) have conflicting guidelines on top of that. Her advice is to become familiar with the programs, understand program procedures, get to know the staff that administers programs and get to know the lenders. Most of your clients need look no further than VHDA’s “flagship product,” FHA Plus, Burgess says. VHDA recognizes that the major obstacle to homeownership is the down payment, so FHA Plus requires little to no down payment. In addition to VHDA’s FHA-insured first mortgage, the borrower also receives a second mortgage to help fund the down payment and closing costs. There is a fixed rate for 30 years on both mortgages. For the first mortgage, the maximum amount is the same as the maximum for an FHA mortgage loan, and for the second mortgage, it is from 3.5 to 5 percent of the sale price. To be eligible, the borrower: • Cannot have owned a home during the past three years

Panel Participants: Michele Watson, Moderator Director, Homeownership Programs, Virginia Housing Development Authority, Janice Burgess Loan Program Manager, Virginia Housing Development Authority Single-Family Programs, Shane Cochran Housing Division Chief, City of Alexandria, Virginia, Doug Myrick Homeownership Program Coordinator, Arlington County, Virginia, Mynor Herrera Realtor ®, Keller Williams Capital Properties, Bethesda, MD and GCAAR Board Member, Donna B. Hurley President/Executive Director, Housing Options & Planning Enterprises, Inc. (H.O.P.E.), Prince Georges County, MD, Brenda Small GRI, Associate Broker & Branch Manager, Prudential PenFed Realty, Washington, D.C.,

Brenda Small (left) of Prudential PenFed Realty takes the floor to share information about D.C. homebuyer programs. Other panelists (l-r) are: Doug Myrick of Arlington County, Donna Hurley of Housing Options & Planning Enterprises, Mynor Herrera of Keller Williams and GCAAR, Shane Cochran of Alexandria, Janice Burgess of VHDA and Moderator Michele Watson of VHDA and REFSF co-chair.


• Cannot use the property for business • Must complete VHDA’s free First-time Homebuyer Class before the loan is approved.

• Must meet income and sales price limits NVAR Realtor® update

Mortgage Options, continued on page 34 May :: June 2012 33

mortgage options

leadership day

Mortgage Options, continued from page 33

A Great Networking Opportunity Noting that VHDA’s homebuyer counseling sets the standard, Doug Myrick, Homeownership Program Coordinator for Arlington County, encouraged the audience to take the VHDA “Train the Trainer” course. This class teaches real estate professionals how to conduct the eight-hour VHDA homeownership education course. Arlington offers the VHDA course each month in English and Spanish and teaching the classes is a great way to learn about how to work with affordable housing programs and meet new clients. “The overwhelming majority of our clients,” Myrick said, “do not have Realtor® or lender representation when they come to the class. They select a real estate professional that they met there. It’s a great networking opportunity for a Realtor®.” Arlington County increases these networking opportunities by hosting lunchtime Q&A sessions where potential buyers can meet lenders and Realtors®. Panel Moderator Michelle Watson, VHDA Director of Homeownership Programs, added that the VHDA homeownership education class is not just for firsttime homebuyers. Last year, more than 15,000 Virginians enrolled in the program. VHDA does not CapitalAppraisal Ad 2-3-12:Layout 1


3:39 PM

have the manpower to teach every single course, so its “Train the Trainer” class instructs lenders, Realtors®, home inspectors, closing agents and other real estate professionals how to teach a portion of the course. When they complete the training, those professionals can also speak about their area of expertise in the homeownership classes. VHDA provides the instructional materials. “It’s an incredible tool to put you in front of a prospective homebuyer,” Watson says. “Our Realtors® and lenders rave about the number of leads they get from it.” Watson also described a new Realtor® certification program that focuses on VHDA funding requirements. Realtors® who complete the class will be listed on the VDHA website. Learn more by going to the VHDA website, and clicking on the link, “Business Partners.”

Housing for Hipsters: Arlington County Also a lender for Arlington County’s primary affordable housing program, VHDA offers down payment and closing cost assistance through the Moderate Income Purchase Assistance Program. It is a first-time homebuyer program that Page 1 features a shared appreciation, 30-year, no interest loan.

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mortgage leadership options day

When the clients sell or refinance, they pay the second trust amount plus a portion of the home’s appreciation. The unique feature of the program is that you don’t have to live or work in Arlington to be eligible; you just have to buy a home there. The income limit is no more than 80 percent of the area median income and the purchase price ceiling for utilizing this program’s down payment is $362,790. The average loan amount is $70,000. Funding through MIPAP is available by lottery. To apply for any Arlington County Program, the borrower needs to submit a homebuyer’s assessment form. This is a onepage intake form to determine whether they qualify for Arlington County or VHDA programs. Borrowers are required to take the VHDA homeownership education course, have a minimum credit score of 620, and get a good faith estimate from a mortgage lender showing that they qualify for a first trust that can be from VHDA, VA, FHA or a conventional lender. Like Alexandria, Arlington has a program for city and public school employees called Live Near Your Work. It offers a forgivable loan for 1 percent of the purchase price of a home in Arlington County. The loan, which can be for as much as $5,000, is forgiven over a three-year period as long

as the buyer remains in the property and continues to be employed by Arlington County. Myrick works to ensure that all of Arlington’s population knows about its affordable housing programs. Many young professionals assume that they would not qualify for these programs. To raise their awareness, the County, working with VHDA and some lending partners, sponsors a series of housing expos and training sessions called “Housing for Hipsters.” Social media is used to attract young professionals. Myrick noted that these events are great opportunities for Realtors®. Their last event attracted 175 people. Ninety percent of them were 35 years old or younger with incomes from $30,000 to more than $130,000.

Washington, D.C.: Using Tax Credits to Make Housing Affordable Unlike the other localities panelists mentioned, D.C. offers tax credits in addition to second trust funding and counseling services. In D.C., says Brenda Small of Prudential PenFed Realty, there is considerable overlap in services and there is no single source for information. Mortgage Options, continued on page 37

YOUR LOCAL LENDER !"#$%&'()*'+$,-$.$#"+/).)'$-&'0,.*,-/$1,/2$34$ 5'.+-$'6&'+,'(0'$,($/2'$#"+/).)'$,(78-/+5$.(7$ .$/"/.*$"9$:4$5'.+-$,($/2'$-'+;,0'$,(78-/+5<$=-$.$ #"+/).)'$*".($">0'+$2'$7'+,;'-$)+'./$ -./,-9.0/,"($2'*&,()$&'"&*'$1,/2$"('$"9$/2'$ #"-/$,#&"+/.(/$?(.(0,.*$7'0,-,"(-$/2'5$#.@'A$ B85,()$"+$+'?(.(0,()$/2',+$2"#'<$ !"#$%&'()*'+$2"*7-$*".($"+,),(./,"($*,0'(-'-$ ,($C,+),(,.D$E.+5*.(7D$.(7$/2'$F,-/+,0/$"9$ G"*8#B,.<$H'$,-$.*-"$/'.02'-$G"(/,(8,()$ I780./,"($G"8+-'-$9"+$FJKL$0+'7,/-<

NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012

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May :: June 2012

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NVAR Realtor® update

mortgage options Mortgage Options, continued from page 35

The City offers two major programs: • The D.C. First-time Home Buyer Federal Credit offers a $5,000 tax credit. This is not restricted to people presently living in D.C. and it is not restricted to low income borrowers. • The D.C. Tax Abatement Program provides that first-time homebuyers who fall within certain income guidelines are exempt from property tax for the first five years. In the sixth year the payment does kick in, but due to the homestead exemption, borrowers still are taxed at a much lower rate. Other programs include: • Shared Equity Loan with City First Bank. This loan of up to $70,000 with a 2 percent down payment applies to condos, coops and single-family homes anywhere in the city. • The Greater Washington Urban League Homebuyers’ Assistance Program is a down payment and closing cost assistance program. Borrowers access benefits through intake centers that provide housing counseling. The trainers provide budget counseling and walk clients through the process. The training ensures that the borrower is mortgage ready and mentally prepared for homeownership. Local real estate agents, lenders, home inspectors and other professionals teach portions of the class so that the borrowers gain a full understanding of what it takes to buy a home and what it takes to stay in that home. The HPAC Program funds up to about $40,000, plus provides an additional $4,900 for closing costs. The program is income-level driven based on household size and total income. It requires that the borrower stay in the home for five years or else the loan must be repaid in full.

Maryland: Close-in Choices are Limited For those agents with clients on the other side of the Potomac, afforda ble housing programs are also available in local Maryland jurisdictions. For information about those opportunities, please read the complete article, available online at The importance of affordable housing customers to a Realtor’s® business cannot be underestimated. “These are NVAR Realtor® update

the people you want to talk to,” says Myrick. “They want to buy and now they know that there is an opportunity for them to buy.” Editor’s Note: As a result of a federal funding decrease announced just before press time, all of Alexandria’s homebuyer assistance programs are being eliminated effective July 1, 2012. There will be a small amount of funding available to assist with the re-sales of covenantrestricted units, however those funds are expected to help no more than eight households per year. The City’s homebuyer counseling and training program is also being eliminated. Funding for the Neighborhood Stabilization Program, which enables the city to purchase foreclosed property, rehab it and sell it to lower-income buyers, remains available through November 2012.

May :: June 2012 37

NV/RPAC contributor list

2012 NV/RPAC Contributors List: We’re Getting There (as of April 2, 2012)

Golden R ($5,000)

John McEnearney NVAR Tom Stevens

Crystal R ($2,500)

Jane Quill Trish Szego

Sterling R ($1,000)

Bob Adamson Mary Bayat Pat Buck & Champ Buck Robyn Burdett David Charron Tracy Comstock Virgil Frizzell Delk Hamaker Margaret Handley Jo Anne Johnson Sita Kapur

Karen Kidwell Pat Kline Tom Meyer Muraji Nakazawa Tracy Pless Anne Rector Zinta Rodgers-Rickert Fetneh Schacht John Stedman Christine Todd Karen Trainor Jon Wolford

Governor’s Club ($500)

Moon Choi Guo Michael Huang Lauren Kivlighan Thai-Hung Nguyen Rebecca Owen Mario Rubio

Capitol Insider ($250)

Maria Albisu Russell “Tom” Boyle Siu Cheung Mary Beth Coya Jenny Dewenter Heather Embrey Lisa Goodfriend Nicholas Lagos Ali Mansouri Kimberly McClary Sarah Louppe Petcher Esin Reinhardt Christine Richardson Audrey Shay Jonathan Spinetto Jake Sullivan

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John Adams Rafael Aguilera Nancy Alert Are Andreson Kannan Annamalai

Lorraine Arora Augusto Arostegui Gay Ashley James Atkins III Thomas Baker Barbara Bechtle Ann Beck James Bell Thomas Bellanca Charles Bengel David Billups Anne Blaicher Phil Bolin Jesse Braudaway Joan Bready Michael Briggs Jeanne Brown Susan Browning William Buck Shirley Buford Jan Chang Lin Chen Ya-Ting Chen Josh Choe Louis Cironi

Candyce Clanton Georgiana Copelotti Janet Croft Theodore Dang Michael Day Bic DeCaro Stephen De Falco Munirshah Dellawar Leslie Dickemann David DiMattina Eileen Dubose Rocio Duty Kathleen Eaton Michele Forbes James Fox Paul Gale Christal Golston Brandon Green Christopher Guldi Stephen Hales Julie Hall Rebecca Hanrahan Melinda Hanson Anne Harrington Shawn Harris

The Economy is Showing Signs of (Drumroll)… Strength GMU’s Dr. Stephen Fuller Delivers Mixed News in the Market Report to NVAR’s Small Broker Forum In a departure from his previous messaging, Dr. Stephen Fuller of George Mason University’s Center for Regional Analysis, explained to a group of NVAR brokers on March 20 that it is now more important for Northern Virginia to pay attention to the national economy. “Our local economy is becoming less different,” he said. “As the national economy accelerates, the gap will close between us and the rest of the country.” Fuller projected that federal spending in this region is expected to grow by just 1 to 1½ percent this year, and by 2013 that increase will disappear. “The erosion we’re going to feel from changing federal spending patterns will be slow,” he said.

Reporting about March 2012 consumer confidence data, GMU’s Dr. Stephen Fuller noted that consumer sentiment about the current economic situation is down compared with the prior month, with spending and revolving debt decreasing, and savings increasing. However, expectations about the future are looking up.

This chart illustrates the projected change in economic growth patterns for this region as compared to the country as a whole. 38

May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

NV/RPAC contributor list

Thanks to You Janet Hewitt Paul Hogge Leamon Howell Ruth Howell Julie Hulshizer Leslie Hutchison Margaret Ireland Rosemarie Johnson Carolyn Jones Lynne Jones Tammy Jones Lilian Jorgenson Matthew Kahn Eui Kang Kristen Kelly Brian Klotz Robert Koenig Subba Kolla Rolfe Kratz Rakesh Kumar Frances Kyte Cindy Lancaster William Lauler Doris Leadbetter Diane Lee

Francis Lee James Lee Kevin Lee Sherri Lee Ashley Leigh Diane Lenahan Roberta Letkiewicz Sonia Lieberman Lisa Lieu Scott MacDonald Ann Malcolm Sandra Mason Lisa May John McAllorum Natalie McArtor Richard McCaffrey Ann McClure Pamela McCoach Edward Mead III Susan Mekenney David Michalski Puran Mittal Priscilla Moore Maggie Mueller-Tyler Diane Murphy

Allene Murray Patricia Nassief James Nellis Phi Nguyen Truc Nguyen Barbara Noll Maureen O’Hara Peggy Oremland Patrick Page Eleanora Panizza Lindsay Peake Julie Pearson Brunhilda Peters Jerry Petitt Natalie Phan James Phillips Mary Pilgrim Gwenda Plush Richard Pruitt Shoeleh Rahnama Katreen Rinaldi Bonnie Rivkin Mike Rokni David Rosenmarkle Elizabeth Ross

Terence Ryan John Sabo Paul Saltz Jesse Sampson Sarah Santa Ana Tazuko Schmitz Terry Seaman Alba Serrano Jay Seville Linwood Shelton Carol Simmons Suzanne Simon Maureen Simpson Monica Sims Anise Snyder E. Jame Souvagis James Stakem Jane Stottlemyer Spencer Stouffer Jeffrey Surdyk Carol Sutfin Swindell Sutton David Sweet Patricia Sykes Jonathan Taylor

Brian Terrebonne Anne Thai Gregory Tomlin Kathleen Trainor Trong Trinh Rajiv Vashist Sanjiv Vashist Virgilio Vasquez Sridhar Vemuru Michael Wang Miriam Wang Mary Whitlock Kevin Wiles Sandra Wilkinson Ann Wilson Christina Wood Holly Worthington Felicia Wu Laura Yi Alla Yun Yili Zhang Louise Zinzi Benjamin Zurun

1111SouthhAlfreddSt Alexandria,,Va..22314

NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012 39

omega tau rho

Newly-Inducted Omega Tau Rho Recipients Honored Created by NAR in 1950, the Omega Tau Rho honor is awarded to members with exemplary dedication and service to the Realtor® association. Staff members of NVAR who have served the association for at least 10 years are eligible for induction into the fraternity. This past February, three NVAR staff members received Omega Tau Rho medallions, and NVAR Chairman-Elect Jon Wolford was also selected for membership in the fraternity. They join a group of approximately 4,000 honorees nationwide.


1. Accepting congratulations from NVAR Chairman Pat Kline (left) and CEO Christine Todd (right) are recently-inducted staff members (center, l-r): Paige Audet – Membership Services Manager, Renee Brown – Education Manager and Leslie Dickemann – Professional Services and RPAC Manager. 2. Honored at the VAR legislative meetings in Richmond this past February, NVAR Chairman-Elect Jon Wolford displays his Omega Tau Rho medal.


May :: June 2012


NVAR Realtor® update

commercial development

Commercial Development: What’s Hot and What’s Not

The NV/RPAC Campaign Presents...

Summer Night Salsa

At the March 6 NVAR Commercial Council meeting, guest speaker Stephanie Hession of CoStar Group explained changes in the region’s commercial activity during the past decade, and offered a glimpse of what’s in store for the future. As this chart shows, investment activity in the office and multifamily sectors is on the rise.

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May :: June 2012 41

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8:45 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.


ASP Designation: Day 3

9 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Herndon


16 hr CED - Evening (part 1A)

6 - 9:30 p.m.


16 hr CED - Evening (part 1B)

6 - 9:30 p.m.


16 hr CED - Evening (part 2A)

6 - 9:30 p.m.


16 hr CED - Evening (part 2B)

6 - 9:30 p.m.


CED: 8 hr Mandated Course

8:45 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.


CED: Agency & Disclosure Under VA Agency Law

8:45 a.m. - 12:25 p.m.


CED: New Rules of Real Estate Finance

1 - 4:45 p.m.



To register for a course listed or view a class description, visit 42





GRI 410: The Code of Ethics is Good Business

8 a.m. - 5 p.m.


Residential Standard Agency Herndon DATE




RSA Course

1 - 4 p.m.


RSA Course

9 a.m. - noon





RSA Course

9 a.m. - noon


RSA Course

9 a.m. - noon


RSA Course

1 - 4 p.m.


May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

letter to the editor

Post Licensing Fairfax Headquarters

NVAR Board Election Process Begins





New Member Orientation

9 a.m. - 4 p.m.


New Member Orientation

9 a.m. - 4 p.m.


Post Licensing (Day 1) What’s In a Contract & Real Estate and Contract Law

Your path to a role in association leadership begins here

9 a.m. - 4 p.m


Post Licensing (Day 2) Agency Law & Ethics

9 a.m. - 4 p.m


Post Licensing (Day 3) - Fair Housing & Business Planning 101

9 a.m. - 4 p.m


Post Licensing (Day 4) - Listing Property and Working with Sellers

1 - 5 p.m.

Nomination forms for the 2012 NVAR Board of Directors will be available to download from beginning Thursday, June 14. If you are interested in being part of NVAR’s governing board, or if you would like to nominate a qualified colleague, this is your opportunity.


Post Licensing (Day 5) - Working with Buyer Clients and Marketing with Technology

8:45 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.





Post Licensing (Day 1) What’s In a Contract & Real Estate and Contract Law

9 a.m. - 4 p.m.


Post Licensing (Day 2) Agency Law & Ethics

9 a.m. - 4 p.m.


Post Licensing (Day 3) - Fair Housing & Business Planning 101

9 a.m. - 4 p.m.


Post Licensing (Day 4) - Listing Property and Working with Sellers

1 - 5 p.m.


Post Licensing (Day 5) - Working with Buyer Clients and Marketing with Technology

8:45 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.


New Member Orientation

9 a.m. - 4 p.m.


New Member Orientation

9 a.m. - 4 p.m.


Election Timeline Thursday, June 14 – Nomination forms available on Thursday, July 5 – Nomination forms due by 5 p.m. E.S.T. Tuesday, Sept. 4 – Election begins – Noon E.S.T. Friday, Oct. 5 – Election ends – 5 p.m. E.S.T.

Principles of Real Estate Fairfax Headquarters DATE

6/11 - 6/21 6/22



Principles of Real Estate: Day 1 -9

9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

Principles Exam Prep Course

9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

11/5 - 11/15 Principles of Real Estate: Day 1 -9 11/16

Principles Exam Prep Course

9 a.m. - 5 p.m. 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

D.C. Continuing Education Fairfax Headquarters DATE




DC Fair Housing and DC Legislative Update

9 a.m. - 4:15 p.m.


DC Fair Housing and DC Financing Issues

9 a.m. - 4:15 p.m.

NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2012 43

new members

James M. Aberle Fouzi Afshari Nazia Aftab Dalil U. Ahmed Samia Akbar Claudette Allen Andrea P. Alvarez Tarlika P. Amin Lisa M. Anderson Augusto G. Angulo-Cuzzi Malikah E. Ash Norine R. Ayash Alison K. Bailey Austin T. Bailey Blaise B. Barnes Josie R. Barondess Jagir S. Bathla Ubaldo J. Berta Jared M. Blatt Charles J. Bollech Se Hun Boung Bettie F. Bowles JoAnn F. Brainard Michael L. Brown Peter S. Brown Christie L. Cardinale Emily R. Chappelle Chongho Cho Jin T. Chung Dianna L. Clarke Edith E. Coronel Nathan T. Cowles

Anne M. Cronin Cameron Crossman Teri L. Crow Eric D. D’Acosta Leslie Davidson Nam Ok Davis Dana L. Dean Betel S. Deferes Yuliya V. Deibes Pilar E. DeJaramillo John H. Derickson Justin S. Devinney George Djaboury Adam H. Dogrul Alicia Doherty Raier Dominguez Astrid C. Duplessis Julie A. Emery Angelica M. Escobar Elias A. Fahel Carlos A. Flores Cheryl L. Folmer Demetrio Ford Reginald Francois Antoinette E. Franklin Douglas J. Fraser III John B. Freeman Leslie J. Frye Jeb S. Fuller Ellen S. Gajda Renee C. Gallagher Debra Galvagna Judith Gamble

new members

Ena E. Garcia Theresa K. Garvis Sabrina Gaskins Angelo D. Gaydardzhiev Richard Gersten Ghassan N. Ghaida Mohammad B. Ghassemieh Shirley A. Ginwright Alda L. Gorgoroso Cynthia E. Graham Monika Griffin Dawn M. Groves Richard A. Gryziak Janine A. Hamilton Maureen F. Hansen Yoshita R. Harrington Deborah A. Hauter Gregory S. Hawley Vicky A. Heckman Yancy I. Hernandez Rebekah Hildebrandt John L. Homan Anthony Indovina Shirley M. Johnson-Boyd Erin K. Jones Anthony D. Jones Jason Jordan Sooghin J. Jung Anastasia V. Kafouros Louis J. Kahle

Jessica M. Keys Elias K. Khalil Nick Khawaja Charles C. Kim Jin Y. Kim Sony K. Kim Steven Kim Jeffrey D. Kline Min S. Ko Gunda S. Krebs Alka Kumar Bree D. Lawrence Scott Y. Lee Hae U. Lee Jeremy M. Lee Sung M. Lee Omar A. Leon Han Lin Jeffrey B. Lipitz Julie Lucas Min S. Luo Joel C. Mack Jennifer G. Mack Abid Mahmood Vida Mahrouyan Elsy A. Mancia Diego M. Marguello Linda A. Martin Alexander Martinkov Kathleen B. McCollom Sean B. McDonough Kellie S. McFarland Michael J. McHugh

Patricia G. Mendieta Kurt Merkling Mirna E. Montalvo Alma J. Moore Vincentte W. Moore Peter G. Morrow Rama Murthy Zohair H. Naghmi Judith M. Narvaez Allen Nezam Phuoc V. Nguyen Alexander Nguyen Cynthia S. Obregon Karen B. Ogden Olmstead Karen M. Owens Kelly L. Palmer John A. Palmer II Michael Park Shannon M. Pfannenstein Khuong D. Pham Miguel L. Pilar Rachael Potts Christian D. Price Alejandra I. Purdy Donald G. Richards Lan H. Riggin Jose L. Rios Deliea F. Roebuck Bruce A. Roland Marta Roundy Vanessa S. Ruloff

Joseph B. Sayers Holly A. Scheele Rene J. Sejas Kunal B. Shah Barbara Shapiro Muhammad F. Sheikh Kelli Shobe Stephanie J. Smith Gloria M. Sodaro Melinda J. Solley Jacqueline A. Steventon Mai H. Tang George Thomas Ronnie D. Thomas Eduardo Torres Brenda L. Trelinski Mary L. Vardell Gilbert L. Veney Anh H. Vu Shijie Wang Kristin J. Weeks Dixon Richard A. Whealen Abisag A. Woldegebriel Tina K. Worden Margaret A. Yaqub Jianqiang Ye Crystal N. Yee Jin S. Yu Abasali Zadehmohamadi Tanveer A. Zafar Muna K. Zalmai Xi Zhang Tina L. Zimmerman

Washington Post Media welcomes NVAR’s new members. Offering print and online options to help you reach 3 out of 4 metro market homeowners each week.*

Looking for Real Estate Advertising Solutions That Really Work?

To find out more about our advertising solutions, email or call 202.334.5775

Real Estate

*Scarborough 2011, Release 2: Washington metro market

Call today to learn more about special offers for new NVAR members! 44

May :: June 2012

NVAR Realtor® update

appraisers & affiliates directory

Appraisers A+ Appraisals


AAA Appraisals LLC


AD Brown Appraisals


Advantage Realty Services Inc.


Alan Lord and Associates Inc.


Anthony Appraisers


AREAS Appraisers Inc.


BARCO 703-730-2272

McGraw Appraisals


Financial Services

Metro Appraisal Services


1st Portfolio Lending

Michael S Mc Mahon


Acacia Federal Savings Bank


Monir Moshashaie


Access National Mortgage


Nancy M. Pruett


BB&T Mortgage

NB Valuation Group Inc.


Carrington Mortgage Services LLC

NVA Appraisal


Chase Home Finance - Falls Church 703-326-9711

Omni Appraisal Services


Chase Home Mortgage - Columbia 410-992-6660

Patricia C. Johnson Appraisal


Fidelis Mortgage LLC


Paul S Fitzgerald


First County Mortgage


Philip Arnold Appraisal Co LLC


First Home Mortgage Corporation


Preston Hummer


FitzGerald Financial Group


Real Estate Appraisals 4 You


George Mason Mortgage


Renner, Hansborough & Reese


Greenpoint Mortgage


Residential Appraisal Group Inc.


Homestead Funding Corp.

Residential Valuation Services


HST Mortgage


Riverpoint Appraisals


Intercoastal Mortgage


Ryan Appraisal Services


Member Advantage Mortgage


Sandra A. Le Blanc


MetLife 571-201-0679

Silvey Appraisals LLC


Monarch Mortgage


Stewart Jarrett R E Appr & Con


Mortgage Access Corp.


Suburban Appraisers & Consultants


Navy Federal Credit Union


Susan Vanderzyl


Pentagon Federal Credit Union


T. L. Hoover Appraisal Service


Prospect Mortgage LLC


The Benjamin Group Inc.


Prosperity Mortgage


VA-MD Appraisal Group LLC


SunTrust Mortgage


Washington Appraisal Group Inc.


SWBC Mortgage


Weichert Realtors®


The Washington Savings Bank


William C. Harvey & Associates


Union Mortgage Group


William Patten & Associates


VHDA 804-343-5981

World Mortgage


Wells Fargo Home Mortgage

BFM Inc.


Bruce W. Reyle and Company Inc.


Capitol Appraisal Service Inc.


Chevy Chase Bank - Bethesda


Chevy Chase Bank - Reston


Classic Appraisals


CMS Appraisals Inc.


D&R Appraisal Services Inc.


Dan W. Mori


DCO Appraisal Services Inc.


Dennis J. Park


Diane V. Quigley Appraisal


Dickman & Associates


Distinctive Homes Realty LLC


Dittmar Realty Group


Donald R. Drake, Jr.


Elite Appraisal Service


F & F Appraisals


Forte Appraisal Service Inc.


Gee Appraisers Inc.


Harry Graef


Harry H. Arikan


Hartmann Group


Hendershott Appraisal Services



Home Appraisers


Carpet Cleaning

Homestar Real Estate Services


Affordable Carpet & Flooring

Hundley and Associates


Closing Gifts

Inman Appraisal Services Inc.


Cutco Closing Gifts

JDC Appraisals Inc.


John L. Brady, Jr.


Commission Advance

Karas Inc.


Kelli B. Weber


Kinder Appraisal Services


LandSafe 877-572-5673 Lesley Omega Appraisers NVAR Realtor® update


703-855-7403 888-813-2988



Government Services Fairfax County 703-766-7777 703-967-9058

Commission Express




Gutter Repair Gagnon’s Gutterworks


Home Cleaning Services Maid Brigade


Home Inspections AmeriSpec Home Inspections


Consumer Resources


Hinson & Jung LLC


Electric/Gas providers

House Inspection Associates


Mr. Energy

Hurlbert Home Inspection


Credit Union Realtors® Federal Credit Union

301-355-7541 703-862-8168

May :: June 2012 45

appraisers & affiliates directory Keystone Home & Environmental


Moving & Storage

Old Dominion Home Inspection


Busy Buddies Inc.

Pillar to Post Inc.


Interstate Moving & Storage

Pillar To Post Inc.


JK Moving & Storage


MBH Settlement Group - Burke

ProTec Inspection Services


Quality Services Moving


MBH Settlement Group - Fair Oaks 703-279-1500

US Inspect


Smartbox Portable Storage


MBH Settlement Group - Kingstowne 703-417-5000

Virginia Home Inspection Service LLC


New Home Builder

Home Repair Services

Toll Brothers

C & M Home Improvement Company Inc. 703-250-4241

Personnel Services

Mr. Sandless


Home Security Home Security Assoc of Virginia


Home Staging Services

MBH Settlement Group - Alexandria 703-739-0100 703-321-8564

MBH Settlement Group - Ananndale 703-852-3000


MBH Settlement Group - Arlington 703-237-1100

MBH Settlement Group - Manassas 703-393-0333 703-753-6688

Employment Enterprises Inc.



Pest Control Services

MBH Settlement Group - McLean 703-734-8900 MBH Settlement Group - Reston 703-318-9333 MBH Settlement Group - Vienna 703-242-2860 Mid-Atlantic Settlement Svcs


Mid-Atlantic Settlement Svcs - Fairfax 703-720-2672

Allstates Termite Control Co. Inc.


Monarch Title - Alexandria


Asian Pest Services LLC


Monarch Title - Herndon


Dekore Inc.


Connorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Pest Control


Monarch Title - McLean


Preferred Staging


My Exterminator LLC


Monarch Title - Springfield


Staged Interior


Home Warranty

Radon Inspection

New World Title & Escrow


Accurate Radon Testing


Paragon Title & Escrow - Bethesda


2-10 Home Buyers Warranty


Arlington Radon


Provident Title & Escrow - Chantilly


HMS Home Warranty


US Inspect


Republic Title Inc.


Old Republic Home Protection


Real Estate Forms

RGS Title


RGS Title - Arlington


Southstar Title & Escrow LLC


Stewart Title & Escrow Inc.


Insurance Services

MB Associates

The Hutt Financial Group


Victor Schinnerer & Co. Inc.


Junk Removal Junk King


Legal Services Brincefield, Hartnett, Maloof


Fredericks & Stephens, P.C.


Joseph A. Cerroni, Esq.


Keegan & DeVol PLC


Law Office of Ann-Lewise Shaw


Lawrence E. Marshall II, PLC


Pesner, Kawamoto, Conway


Peterson, Noll, & Goodman, PLC


Rich Rosenthal Brincefield Manitta Dzubin & Kroeger


Marketing/Media The Washington Post


Mold Remediation AHS Mold Aid




Real Estate Services All American NOVA Home Buyers


Real Estate Signposts


Roofing DryHome Roofing & Siding Inc.


The Settlement Group Inc. - Alexandria 703-933-3090 The Settlement Group Inc. - Burke


The Settlement Group Inc. - McLean


Universal Title


Vesta Settlements


Technology Services

Settlement Services Absolute Title & Escrow LLC

703-842-7525 703-777-3172

ATG Title


MRIS 301-838-7100

Champion Title & Settlements Inc.


RealEstate Business Intelligence

301-838-7131 703-999-7341

Dominion Title Corporation


Solution Station

Ekko Title - Centreville


Virtual Tours

Ekko Title - Fairfax


BTW images

Ekko Title - Vienna


eTitle Agency Inc.


Highland Title & Escrow


Key Title - Fairfax


Key Title - Reston


KVS Title


May :: June 2012


Bold signifies NVAR Partners (Last updated May 1, 2012) Do you have a correction to this list? Please e-mail changes to Tracy Reynolds at NVAR RealtorÂŽ update

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Over 250 Professional Realtors® Licensed in VA, MD & DC

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May/June 2012 Update Magazine  
May/June 2012 Update Magazine  

This is the May/June 2012 issue of NVAR's Update magazine.