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published by the northern virginia association of realtors 速

May/June 2013

Investing in Northern Virginia

save the date: 32 May 22

Finance Panel

Fostering Regional Real estate Opportunities

43 June 5

Legal Summit

38 June 13

NV/RPAC Karaoke

33 S eptember 5 Economic Summit

15 October 15

Convention & Trade Show NVAR Realtor速 update

May :: June 2013


Hot Market, Easing Gridlock, Hard Work



NVAR members are poised for success

Volume 96, Issue 3

2013 BOARD OF DIRECTORS Chairman of the Board: Jon Wolford Chairman-Elect: Mario Rubio, CIPS, SRES Immediate Past Chairman: Pat Kline, CIPS, GREEN, GRI, SRES, TRC Secretary/Treasurer: Mary Bayat, GRI DIRECTORS-AT-LARGE Bob Adamson, CRS, GRI Lorraine Arora, ABR, GREEN, GRI, SRES Julia Avent, ABR, CRS, GRI Brian Block, ABR, CRS, e-PRO, GRI, SRES Moon Choi Tracy Comstock, ABR, ASP, BPOR, CIPS, e-PRO, GREEN, GRI, SFR Heather Embrey, ABR, e-PRO, GRI, SRS, SRES, SFR Virgil Frizzell Suzanne Granoski, ABR, ASP, CDRS, GRI Thai-Hung Nguyen, ABR, CRS, SFR Christine Richardson, CDPE, CRS, GRI 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 Photography: Kipp Burgoyne Graphic Designer: Wanda Ng Fontana Contributors: Capricia Alston, Amanda Arwood, Frank Dillow, Jay Eskovitz, Adam Gallegos, Pat Kline, Michele Lerner, Mike Lynn, Lisa Vierse May, Sarah Louppe Petcher and Lisa 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 2013 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:

By Jon Wolford

Dear Friends and Associates.... The first quarter of 2013 is everything I thought it would be and more. Buyers have been out in droves, and those who could find a home have been more than willing to pay for it! The market is on fire! And, our friends in Richmond stepped up and brought pride back to the citizens of The Commonwealth of Virginia. The Governor, with help from both parties, passed breakthrough transportation legislation after more than 20 years of fruitless efforts. This is the year we seize opportunity instead of being stalled by gridlock. “Coming Soon” signs, multiple offers and escalation clauses are the result of low inventory and high demand. National and local news is filled with reports of increasing prices and frustrated buyers. Already some have asked if we could be facing another “bubble” as many buyers bid well above the asking price. Our partners at George Mason University predicted that we won’t face a bubble and that sequestration will not seriously impact the market this year when they spoke at our Herndon location in April. They believe inventory will rise with prices and supply will grow to meet demand by year’s end. The market will continue to heal. While no one wants to pay more taxes, we can all agree that something needs to be done about traffic congestion. As State Delegate Dave Albo (R-Springfield) said at our annual RPAC Major Donor appreciation breakfast in March, “No one expects to pay what they did in 1981 for a hamburger, so why would they expect to pay 1981 prices for transportation?” A Republican, Mr. Albo knows we can’t fix transportation without raising taxes. With guidance from our own Mary Beth Coya, the Governor and a bipartisan grove of legislators worked to craft a measured compromise in the midnight hour to bring Northern Virginia and the Commonwealth the relief we need. Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-11) thanked our Realtor® group for working with our legislators and said how proud it made him to be from Virginia. He said it is a model for Congress to follow. I’m proud of our NVAR team too! Our staff, volunteer leaders and members are doing some fabulous work. Marcus Simon’s kickoff for his campaign for the 53rd Virgnia House District was a ground breaking event. Bowling night, Realtor® Open House Weekend, the education, the forums, the fun... we’re doing great stuff at the Association and I hope you are involved. And ... while the market is on fire, there have been no fires! We are all working hard, stepping up to meet our challenges and we are reaping the rewards. This is the time to make the most of our opportunities and we are doing it! Keep up the great work, Realtors®; your Chief is proud of YOU!

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Join us on... Ads in Update magazine do not necessarily carry the endorsement of NVAR. NVAR Realtor® update

Jon Wolford 2013 Chairman of the Board May :: June 2013


SamsonMagazineAd 4-2-13_Layout 1 4/2/13 2:52 PM Page 1

in this issue features in Northern 24 Investing Virginia: Fostering

Regional Real Estate Opportunities Learn about who is investing in Northern Virginia, the impact on traditional buyers and the effect on local rental rates.



Speaking Out Immediate Past Chairman offers perspective on 2013 transportation legislation. Waiving Contingencies to Combat Multiple Offers What are the consequences?

22 Strike a Pose

Members dress for success at NV/RPAC bowling night fundraiser.


NV/RPAC Major Investors meet face to face with elected officials

30 Fair Housing Luncheon Highlights Need for


Hot Market, Easing Gridlock, Hard Work – NVAR members are poised for success.


Government Affairs

New Virginia Laws – What Realtors® need to know about 2013 legislation.


Legal Lines

Realtor’s® Guide to Well & Septic: Part One


Market Update

Is there a Bubble in the Northern Virginia Housing Market? The short answer is: No.


Commercial Corner

Springfield – the New ‘Here’ in Northern Virginia

46 Ask NVAR

‘Coming Soon’ Listings, License Transfers – Your Questions Answered

Tech Tips

Smartphone Apps for Homebuyers

Market Forecast: Clouds & Silver Linings Transit-oriented development paves the way for economic growth in Northern Virginia.

29 Ask Me!

Nominations accepted beginning June 10. Introducing the 2013 class.

38 Marcus Simon Kicks Off Campaign at NVAR HQ


28 NAR/NVAR Survey

34 NVAR Leadership Institute


Vigilance, Compliance NVAR sponsors poster and essay contest.

33 NVAR Board Elections

Chairman of the Board

23 Breakfast of Champions


Affiliate member seeks 53rd Virginia House District seat.

40 Candice Bowers Named Virginia CRS of the Year

Open House Statistics

Ambassadors Attend Housing Expo

39 New Members 40 Class Schedules 42 NV/RPAC Contributors 44 Appraisers & Affiliates The views expressed in this publication may not reflect NVAR policy, and may be the opinions of the writer or interviewee.


speaking out

Speaking out on . . . The Transportation Bill: It’s Good Medicine I’M sure by now that most of you have heard about the new Virginia transportation bill recently passed by our legislature and signed by Governor McDonnell. I’m also pretty sure that there are questions, both about what the bill entails, and why NVAR leadership supported it. First, a few facts: • Virginia has fallen from #1 to #3 among businessfriendly states in recent polls, mostly due to our transportation issues. Revenue for roads will go down even more rapidly if we have fewer businesses located in Northern Virginia. This impacts our local economy and therefore our livelihood as Realtors®. • Each commuter in our region wastes 67 hours each year sitting in traffic, at a cost of nearly $1,400 per person in lost productivity and wasted fuel. • The last transportation tax increase was 1987, yet we now have 79 percent more miles traveled, 30 percent more people and 61 percent more vehicles in Virginia. And we are expected to add 350,000 more households in Northern Virginia in the next 25 years.

• Our traffic is the worst in the country according to the Texas Transportation Institute, and any Realtor® here knows that’s true. About 15 years ago, I could drive from my home in Burke to Richmond in a little over an hour. Good luck with that now! It became abundantly clear that we had to act if we want to see businesses and their prospective employees consider Northern Virginia as an ideal location to live and work. Northern Virginia’s economy drives the Commonwealth. Home values and real estate activity are directly related to our business climate. I’ve had out-of-town buyers who took one look at our traffic during midday and said “no thanks” to that prospective promotion. I’m sure you’ve had that happen, too. Whatever your political leanings, I think most of you agree we need to do SOMETHING to get things moving on our roads. By law, maintenance of roads takes precedence over construction. Northern Virginia construction funds had to be used downstate for maintenance, rather than for new construction or mass transit here. One of the factors that finally brought legislators and businesses across the

“The stars only align on these issues about once every 25 years.” state to agree to new revenue sources, is that by 2017, Virginia would have NO construction funds available if we continued down this path. In addition, without matching funds, we would have to begin turning away federal transportation dollars that would then go to other states. These simple facts caused Northern Virginians to beg for help, and in 2006 a group of diverse businesses, real estate leaders and legislators agreed to accept additional taxes if the money was dedicated to transportation infrastructure. NVAR had long opposed additional taxes on real estate, but industry leaders agreed that everyone had to be a part of the solution. NVAR leadership agreed that when the economy began to turn around, we would stay true to the commitment to be part of the solution. Toward the end of 2012, it all began to come together. The Governor and legislators knew the problems were dire and there wasn’t enough state money to tackle the problem. Even the downstate legislators agreed, as they

also now had roads that needed to be upgraded. Since apparently the stars only align on these issues about once every 25 years, it was imperative that an agreement be reached this year. The original Grantors Tax proposal was for an increase of $.40/$100. NVAR and VAR worked to get that increase ultimately reduced to $.15/$100. There will also be increases in a few other taxes, so the legislation does not affect just real estate. What it does do is address our transportation needs for the foreseeable future. As they say – no pain, no gain. In my opinion, we’ve dealt with pain for 25 years. Realtors® and commuters alike will gain if we have the funds to encourage growth in our area without the gridlock. For a complete look at the transportation bill, see page 10 or go to transportation. Pat Kline, a Realtor ® with Avery Hess – Springfield, is the immediate past chairman of NVAR’s Board of Directors.

This space in each issue is reserved for you! Do you have an opinion, comment, critique, pat on the back to share with your fellow NVAR members? Email your submission to, subject line: Speaking Out, to be considered for publication. We reserve the right to edit for space, style and clarity. NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2013


economic summit

government affairs

New Virginia Laws: What Realtors速 Need to Know By Lisa Vierse May

THE 2013 Virginia General Assembly passed a number of measures affecting the practice of real estate, property rights and landlord-tenant relations. In addition, members of both houses approved a landmark transportation funding bill to bring needed relief to area commuters. A list of all new laws impacting our industry and region can be found at Below is a summary of key legislation from the 2013 session.

Realtor速-Sponsored Legislation: HB 1480 (Farrell), Fair Housing Violations: In Fair Housing cases


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involving both licensees and nonlicensees, respondents had been forced to appear before both the Virginia Real Estate Board and the Fair Housing Board for the same violation. Under this bill, only the Real Estate Board will hear Fair Housing cases involving both licensed and unlicensed respondents. In no event shall the jurisdiction for the same case be split between the Real Estate Board and the Fair Housing Board. HB 2073 (Yancey), False Advertising: This bill clarifies protections for licensed real estate brokers and salespersons by stating that they shall not be liable for false advertising when

NVAR Realtor速 update

HB 1734 (Loupassi), Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act: This legislation makes several changes and technical edits, including: • Unless otherwise agreed to in writing by each of the tenants on a multi-tenant lease, disposition of the security deposit shall be made with one check being payable to all such tenants and sent to the forwarding address provided. • If the tenants do not provide a forwarding address for security deposit refunds, the deposit balance shall be paid into the state treasury after one year and 45 days. • Allows month-to-month tenancies for a single family residence to agree to notice of termination periods other than 30 days. • Permits landlords to charge refundable application deposits and separate non-refundable application fees. • Sets the 2012 and 2013 security deposit interest rates at 0 percent. • Clarifies that unlawful detainer tenant redemption remedies may be used only once in a 12-month period, regardless of any lease renewals or the length of the lease agreement. • States that during an eviction, landlords may remove tenants’ personal property from the dwelling, the premises and any on-site storage areas. relying on public records or information from a third party. This includes any civil action or regulatory action brought under the real estate licensing laws. HB 1615 (Gilbert), Methamphetamine Laboratory Disclosure: Beginning July 1, 2014, residential property owners and landlords who have actual knowledge that a property was previously used to manufacture methamphetamine and has not been cleaned up in accordance with the Department of Health guidelines will provide a written disclosure when selling or renting the property. Tenants may terminate the tenancy if the required disclosure is not provided. HB 1807 (Miller), Resale Disclosure of Federal Financing: Sellers and Buyers of residential condo units and lots within a property owners association are often restricted from using FHA financing because of terms in the association documents or due to the number of rental units in the community. This legislation requires those associations to include a statement about availability of FHA financing New Laws continued on page 10 NVAR Realtor® update

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economic summit

government affairs continued from page 9

in their resale documents, so that potential buyers may know earlier in the process if their financing will be approved. That statement will not guarantee that the development shall remain federally eligible in the future.

allows a plaintiff ’s attorney or agent to present affidavits in court proceedings listing outstanding rent, fees and damages owed to the plaintiff, and to receive a judgment if the defendant does not appear.

HB 1509 (Habeeb), Failed Electronic Payments: Prior to this bill, the Virginia Code did not address the acceptance of rent payments by electronic means. This bill allows landlords to take the same civil action on electronic payments as they would to recover a bad check. The bill also

HB 1736 (Farrell), Escrow of Rents: Several provisions of existing law regarding escrowed funds were unclear or in conflict with accepted practices. With this legislation, prepaid rent received more than one month prior to the due date and all security deposits shall be placed in an escrow account by

the end of the fifth business banking day following receipt, unless otherwise agreed to in the lease transaction. Application deposits shall be placed in escrow by the end of the fifth business banking day following approval of the rental application. Funds must remain in the escrow account until disbursed in accordance with the lease, property management agreement or by law. SB 841 (Lucas), Residential Occupancy Standards: An owner or managing agent may restrict unit occupancy to two persons per

Tr ansportation NVAR applauds the bipartisan efforts of the General Assembly and Governor Bob McDonnell (R) to enact the first meaningful infusion of transportation revenues for Northern Virginia in nearly 27 years. NVAR has been part of a business coalition in our region, working for many years to obtain new, substantial and sustainable revenues to address our growing transportation needs. The full details of HB 2313 follow. Among the funding sources in HB 2313 is an increase in the real estate Grantor’s Tax in Northern Virginia. The increase will bring the rate to a total of $0.25 per $100 ($2.50 per $1,000). In a perfect world, NVAR would prefer not to tax real estate transactions. However, this was the year where members of both houses and members of both parties saw an opportunity to reverse the continued neglect of our transportation network. The message was clear: the time to act was now, before another 27 years elapse. As a result, NVAR honored its commitment to be part of a transportation funding solution, so long as other industries were also part of that solution. NVAR worked closely with Delegates Dave Albo (R-Springfield) and Jackson Miller (R-Prince William), Senator Janet Howell (D-Reston), and Governor McDonnell to reduce the Grantor’s Tax increase from the originally proposed amount. We commend their efforts to lessen the impact on area homeowners while also providing the transportation revenues we so desperately need. NVAR members also played a vital role in this process through letters, emails and meetings with officials. We thank all of these members for their leadership on this issue.


HB 2313 (Howell, W.), Revenues for Transportation: Statewide – $880 million annually • Removes 17.5 cents per gallon gasoline tax • Adds 3.5 percent wholesale tax on gasoline and 6 percent on diesel (with refunds for personal-use diesel vehicles) • Increases sales and use tax to 5.3 percent (excludes food) • Increases sales tax on cars to 4.15 percent • Increases vehicle registration fee on alternative fuel vehicles to $64 • Includes revenues from federal Internet Sales Tax Act; if the Federal Government doesn’t authorize an Internet Sales Tax by 2015, the wholesale gas tax will increase to 5.1 percent • Dedicates additional General Fund revenues to transportation • Dedicates $300 million over three years to Dulles Rail Phase II.

Northern Virginia Region –­$300 million annually that stays in the region • Increases sales tax an additional 0.7 percent, to a total of 6 percent (excludes food) • Increases real estate Grantor’s Tax from $0.10 per $100 to a total of $0.25 per $100 ($2.50 per $1,000) • Increases hotel transient occupancy tax by 2 percent • Commercial and Industrial Tax: localities to impose at $0.125 per $100 or dedicate equal revenues from other tax sources into a local transportation fund; if it does not, funding from the Northern Virginia Transportation Authority will be reduced by the amount that the locality does not dedicate to the local fund.

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NVAR Realtor® update

government affairs bedroom, according to applicable state and federal laws and regulations. This prevents legal action against landlords or agents for restricting maximum occupancy beyond what is prescribed in the building code. HB 2222 (Helsel), Appraisal Management Companies: This bill clarifies that both residential and commercial appraisal management companies are bound by state requirements to use licensed appraisers, to disclose fees charged and to refrain from influencing the appraisal process.

install or use solar energy collection devices on the property. In addition, community associations shall cite in the resale disclosure packet any restrictions concerning the size, place and manner of placement of solar energy collection devices on individual properties.

Other Real Estate Legislation:

HB 1641 (Knight)/SB 1179 (Ruff), DPOR Investigations: DPOR boards shall provide regulants a notice advising them of the right to be heard at an informal fact-finding conference prior to any disciplinary decision. If the regulant does not request a conference within 30 days of receipt of the notice, the board may issue a case decision.

HB 2305 (Ramadan), Solar Panels: This bill adds to VREB’s online list of seller’s representations to prospective purchasers, that the seller makes no representations on the right to

HB 1521 (Villanueva), Tourism Activity Zones: Localities may designate tourism activity zones on their zoning maps. Owners of residential property may disclose in NVAR Realtor® update

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writing to any prospective purchaser or lessee of the property that the subject property is located within a tourism activity zone and its potential impacts on the property. SB 1004 (Howell), Early Lease Termination: Victims of domestic abuse or sexual assault may terminate a rental agreement with at least 30 days’ notice. The landlord shall be provided a copy of the court-issued conviction or protective order, and no more than two lease terminations shall be granted under a single conviction. Other co-tenants shall be responsible for their lease obligations. Landlords may terminate the lease and recover damages should the sole remaining tenant be the perpetrator of the crime. Lisa Vierse May is the NVAR Government Affairs Manager.


legal lines

Realtor’s® Guide to Well & Septic: Part One By Mike Lynn

Recent changes in Virginia Law and subsequent regulations for alternative septic systems have brought septic issues for buyers and sellers to the forefront of the real estate sale. The results of a well and septic system inspection are likely to be as important as the home inspection. However, unlike roofs, appliances, HVAC systems and other building components, the most important components of a septic system are buried underground and can require excavation to inspect. Even then, there are unknowns, and the opinion of an experienced professional is the key to making informed decisions. The majority of the septic systems in Northern Virginia can be traced back to Fairfax County building booms in the ’70s to ’90s. This means that many of the systems serving these houses are 20 to 40 years old. The expected life of a conventional septic system during these periods was 25 years. They were intended to serve the homes until they were connected to public sewer. In most cases, public sewer isn’t coming to these neighborhoods.


Inspection Straight Talk Agents representing sellers hope that nothing is found, and may try to bargain on behalf of their clients for a less invasive inspection or walkover. Agents who represent purchasers know that more information is better, and a more thorough inspection is in the seller’s best interest. No one wants to find problems that kill a transaction, add unnecessary expense to either side or draw regulatory attention to a property where no problems were known to the owner. It’s a delicate balance and one that most inspectors and agents appreciate.

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NVAR Realtor® update

What Is NSF International?

10. The real estate contract, lender requirements and loan guidelines should all be considered before ordering a well and septic inspection.

Founded in 1944, NSF International is an independent, notfor-profit organization that provides standards development, product certification, auditing, education and risk management for public health and the environment.

Reports needed

Top 10 Virginia Well and Septic Facts 1. There is no Virginia law or regulation that requires septic systems or wells to be inspected at the time real property is bought or sold. 2. Virginia law requires a seller to disclose if the house is served by a septic system, and to inform purchasers that it is the seller’s responsibility to determine the details about the system and its maintenance requirements. 3. If any person in Virginia claims to be a certified inspector, then that person must be an NSF-certified or other nationally recognized certified inspector. If the inspector doesn’t claim to be certified, then he or she could be a TV repair person inspecting and reporting on a septic system. 4. Alternative septic systems are required to be inspected annually, and reports are filed electronically into a state database. Some counties have local databases accessible to the public to view service history, capacities and component types. 5. Septic tanks are required to be pumped out every five years in most counties, but this pump-out does not require an inspection of the septic tank or any other septic components. 6. The state health department does not have an adopted standard for inspection of septic systems for real estate sales and does not perform them. Some local health departments do these inspections as a service to the community, but most do not. 7. There are no standards for existing wells in terms of yield or quality. New wells are required to produce at least one gallon per minute, and some localities require a quality analysis. Absence of coliform bacteria is the only state requirement for private wells. 8. No permits are required in order to inspect a septic system, including uncovering components, cleaning a septic tank or performing inspections or routine maintenance on alternative systems. 9. There are now DPOR-licensed onsite soil evaluators, operators (which include pumpers) and installers. Each of these DPOR licenses has a conventional class and an alternative class. Conventional licensees can only work with conventional septic systems and alternative licensees can work on either type of system. NVAR Realtor® update

Real estate contracts vary from locality to locality and some private sellers and attorneys use their own contracts. Most contracts and lenders require a well and septic inspection and report, but the details of the inspections and which party will bear the cost usually must be agreed to by the buyer and seller. Agents should discuss the options of a walkover or visual inspection, which may be adequate for new or frequently maintained system serving an occupied house. A vacant property leaves the seller, the buyer and the inspector in a precarious position as the system can’t be evaluated under a normal load. A more comprehensive investigation may be warranted for older systems or when the house has been vacant. Mike Lynn is president of The SES Companies in Warrenton, Virginia, offering soil and environmental services.

Editor’s Note: This is part one of a two-part series on Well & Septic. Look for part two in the July/August issue.

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waiving contingencies

Waiving Contingencies to Combat Multiple Offers By Jay N. Eskovitz

AS the real estate market continues to adjust, trying to find its equilibrium, many segments are faced with limited inventory, escalating prices and multiple offers. Therefore it becomes essential in these “hot pocket” areas to distinguish one offer from the others. In addition to an escalation addendum, many real estate agents and buyers have decided to waive various contract contingencies to give their offer an edge over others, or to maintain equality with other offers that include no contingencies. The three most commonly utilized buyer-protection contingencies are: 1) The financing contingency 2) The appraisal contingency, and 3) The home inspection contingency. Buyers want to know which contingency is most important, and whether any or all should be waived in the offer. The answer depends on many factors, including: the buyer’s financial position and liquid assets, the age of the property, the buyer’s risk aversion, the buyer’s determination to own the property and the real estate agent’s experience and expertise. Let’s assume we are dealing with a buyer who is in a good financial condition, making an offer on a property that is more than ten years old. In this instance, the contingencies should be ranked from least important to most important as follows: 1) financing; 2) appraisal; and 3) home 14

inspection. This buyer knows his finances quite well, and with an experienced loan officer can quickly determine the likelihood of loan approval and may even obtain preapproval. This should be accomplished before submitting an offer. As far as the appraisal contingency is concerned, it is quite likely that in an escalating market, with multiple offers above the list price, the appraisal will be below the contract price. The listing agent knows this and will dissuade the seller from accepting an offer with an appraisal contingency. Also, the buyer should know, or the Realtor® should explain the reality and the consequence of a low appraisal. The buyer must understand that his price is higher than t he prices in the recent past used by the appraiser. Armed with this knowledge and with liquid assets to pay 100 percent of the sales price above the appraised value, the buyer can accept or justify the price as a by-product of an escalating market. The home inspection contingency remains the most difficult contingency to waive, and most often, this waiver is coupled with an acceptance of the property in “as-is” condition. Without a home inspection and with Virginia being a “buyerbeware” state, any defects in the property will become an unexpected May :: June 2013

expense for the buyer and may even pose health risks. Excluding fraud by the seller, which is extremely difficult to prove in Virginia, all property defects pass to the buyer without recourse. And while buying a home warranty is prudent, it will not cover many major defects. Some offers add a home inspection “for informational purposes.” If accepted by the seller and serious defects are discovered, the buyer is now in a position of deciding whether or not to breach the contract, which includes severe adverse financial consequences. Additionally, devious sellers facing expensive repairs, e.g. cracked foundations, crushed sewer pipes, water seepage, mold, etc., know that they can avoid these expensive fixes when a buyer waives home inspection protection. The seller may be waiting for a hot market to “dump” a “money pit.” Buyers must ultimately choose which, if any, contingencies to waive in their offer, and must know the potential consequences of that decision. This is a risk vs. reward analysis that should be made judiciously, and not influenced by the over-exuberance of owning a particular property. Jay N. Eskovitz is one of the principle owners of Key Title and partner in the Annandale law firm of Eskovitz, Lazarus & Pitrelli, P.L.L.C. NVAR Realtor® update

tech tips

Smartphone Apps for Homebuyers By Adam Gallegos

There are countless smartphone apps that can help consumers during the home buying or selling process. I want to share a few FREE apps that are among my favorites. Sitegeist – As a real estate agent, I am always a little hamstrung when a client asks about demographics. Because of Fair Housing Laws, I’m not able to comment on this subject. With Sitegeist, clients can look up demographic information on their own based on GPS coordinates. Other helpful information you can find on Sitegeist: • Age Distribution • Political Contributions • Average Rent • Popular Local Spots • Recommended Restaurants NVAR Realtor® update

• How People Commute • Record Temperatures • Housing Units Over Time HOMESNAP – The next time buyers are out and see a home that interests them, they can simply snap a photo of it using Homesnap. This app provides information such as the year the home was built, number of bedrooms/ bathrooms, estimated value, square footage, lot size, last sold amount, appreciate potential and more. If the home is on the market, there is information about the listing, including photos. Clients can also

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share this information with their agent. WALKSCORE – We’ve been loving the website for years. It provides a score from 1-100, based on the walkability of a particular location. It also provides insight on local transportation options, dining, shopping and other neighborhood gems. Now you can take Walkscore on the go as a smartphone app. Adam Gallegos is the founding owner and broker of Arbour Realty in Arlington. He can be reached at


market update

Is there a Bubble in the Northern Virginia Housing Market? By Lisa A. Sturtevant

WITH nearly double-digit price appreciation over the past few months, some have begun to ask whether the Northern Virginia and greater Washington, D.C. area housing markets are headed towards another bubble. Bidding wars are increasingly common. Many first-time homebuyers are having a hard time finding a house near their job that is in their price range. Does this sound a lot like the 2003 or 2004 market? Are these all signs that Northern Virginia is headed for another bubble? The short answer is no. At least not the kind of bubble we experienced in 2002 through 2006. But the current market does share some of the same characteristics as the overheated market during those years. The Case-Shiller index for the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area (Figure 1) shows the steep run-up in home prices between 2002 and 2006. Prices fell sharply between 2007 and 2009, but there has been a modest upward trend in prices since 2009. The market rebounded more quickly in Northern Virginia. In March 2013, the average sale price in the NVAR region was $532,000, a 10.6 percent increase over the March 2012 average price (Figure 2.) This March bump comes after a 9 percent increase in February and a 9.4 percent increase in January, and home price growth in the region in 38 out of the last 41 months. Prices have been up across housing types, with particularly strong price growth in March among single-family detached and condominium units. The number of active listings in the NVAR footprint was just 2,159 at the end of March, higher than the inventory levels of 2004 and 2005, NVAR Realtor速 update

and about the same as in 2002 and 2003 (Figure 3.) The ratio of sold price to list price was 96.6 percent in March 2013, up from 95.0 percent a year ago. Homes were on the market an average of 48 days, down from an average of 72 days last March, but still higher than the 20 to 30 days on average during 2002 through 2004. Potential homebuyers talk about the difficulty of competing with cash buyers, and some homeowners feel intensifying pressure to put their house on the market. The frenetic market activity is reason to pause and ask whether the region is overheating again and heading towards another unsustainable housing bubble.

May :: June 2013

Market Update continued on page 18


market update continued from page 17

According to one definition of a housing bubble (see box on this page), there are several factors that need to be present to lead to a possible housing bubble. Assessing the current market suggests that these factors do not necessarily exist in the Northern Virginia market.

Increased speculative demand Demand for housing has been strong in Northern Virginia and in the greater Washington, D.C. area. Much of the recent demand has been fueled by relatively strong job growth in the region in the years following the economic downturn. Between 2008 and 2011, for example, the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area had positive net domestic migration—that is, more people moved into the metro area than moved out. The movement of households to the region was driven by the availability of jobs here when they were scarce in other parts of the U.S. Furthermore, the Northern Virginia area has benefited from relatively high wage jobs in recent years. Fairfax and Loudoun counties have among the highest household incomes in the country. This job growth and these highearning households are important drivers of recent demand for housing in the region.

Definition of ‘Housing Bubble’ A run-up in housing prices fueled by demand, speculation and the belief that recent history is an infallible forecast of the future. Housing bubbles usually start with an increase in demand in the face of limited supply, which takes a relatively long period of time to replenish and increase. Speculators enter the market, believing that profits can be made through short-term buying and selling. This further drives demand. At some point, demand decreases or stagnates at the same time supply increases, resulting in a sharp drop in prices – and the bubble bursts. Source:

Investors have been an important part of the recent recovery. However, the objectives of current investors seem to have shifted compared to the 2002-2006 market. While investors tend to be “speculative” by definition, the current market includes more investors who are holding onto properties as long-term rentals to capitalize on growing demand for rental housing following the housing bust. Instead of buying-and-flipping, investors are more likely to be buying-and-renting, which can contribute to a more stable housing market.

Limited supply that takes a long time to replenish According to laws of supply and demand, when the availability of a product decreases (as demand remains constant), the price for that good tends to rise. The historically low inventories have certainly been a driver of price growth in the Northern Virginia region. There is less than a month’s supply of inventory of townhouses in the NVAR region and less than a two month’s supply of single-family detached homes. The low inventory is partially a result of an unwillingness or inability of homeowners to list their homes for sale. Some homeowners who are underwater on their mortgage are unable to sell without having to go through a short sale process. However, fewer and fewer homeowners find themselves underwater as prices have risen. Other homeowners have been unwilling to sell, feeling uncertain about the trajectory of the current market. But confidence is rising. New construction also contributes to inventory. During the recession, new residential construction ground to a halt. But recently, the number of new residential starts in the region has risen. At first, building activity included mostly multi-family rental buildings; however, by the end of last year there was a steady increase in the pace of new single-family construction activity. 18

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NVAR Realtor® update

As a result, the supply in the region—while still very low— will start to replenish itself in 2013 as existing homeowners list their homes and new construction comes online.

Availability and cost of credit Not mentioned explicitly in the definition of housing bubble is the credit market. Interest rates are at historically low levels. This could potentially draw people into the market who might not otherwise enter, and could help to push prices up artificially. However, even though credit is cheap, access remains difficult. A critical difference between the current demand and the overheated market of the previous housing boom is the nature of the mortgage market. Tighter underwriting standards have limited the pool of potential homebuyers who are most qualified and are most likely to be able to afford and sustain a home mortgage. The demand this time is based more closely on market fundamentals and the price growth in the region is therefore more “real.”

Second, the structure of the Washington, D.C. area economy and the demographic make-up of its population is changing. Over the next five years, the region’s job growth will be concentrated more heavily in the construction and health services sectors (relatively lower wage jobs), with job losses in the federal government sector and slower growth in the professional and business services sector (the region’s two highest wage sectors). Northern Virginia and the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area will have more one-worker households and the overall labor force will include a greater number of younger workers as Baby Boomers retire. All of these changes lead to lower household incomes, which affect housing demand. As a result of the economic and demographic changes in the region, the demand for rental housing and for smaller, more moderately priced owner housing will outpace the demand for larger, more expensive housing. The Northern Virginia housing market will continue to improve, though it is unlikely we will see persistent double-digit price growth in the years ahead. Lisa A. Sturtevant is the Deputy Director of George Mason University’s Center for Regional Analysis and an Associate Research Professor in the GMU School of Public Policy.

Are Home Prices in Northern Virginia Sustainable? Given the underlying fundamentals, it is not surprising that home prices in the region have appreciated. Looking ahead, there are at least two trends at work to suggest that while the housing market will continue to improve in 2013, home prices may rise more slowly. First, Northern Virginia and the greater Washington, D.C. area now have competition from other places around the U.S. In most metropolitan areas, housing markets have bottomed out and job growth is on the rise. Workers have more options than they did one or two years ago and may choose places other than the Washington, D.C. area. A slowdown in migration to the region will dampen demand. At the same time, investors also are being lured to other regions as job growth accelerates and the demand for rental housing picks up. NVAR Realtor® update

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commercial corner

Commercial Corner Springfield….the New ‘Here’ in Northern Virginia By Frank Dillow

The Springfield commercial real estate market is soon to be transformed from the largest industrial/flex submarket in Fairfax County, into the next mixed-use dynamo. In the process, it will play a much larger role in the Fairfax County economy. Home to nearly 32,000 residents, and currently known for its shopping mall, commuter neighborhoods and flex/ warehouses, Springfield will hardly be recognizable in the near future. Developers are poised to add millions of square feet of office and retail construction. “Soon there will be a new ‘here’ here,” predicts Nancy-jo Manney, executive director of the Greater Springfield Chamber of Commerce.

Retail: What’s in ‘Store?’ The area already boasts more than 6.4 million square feet of retail space, with a desirable vacancy rate of less than 3 percent, according to the latest CoStar report. But the big retail news is Vornado Realty Trust’s redevelopment of the Springfield Mall. “The Springfield Mall is in the midst of a total transformation that will make it the dominant fashion offering for an affluent and underserved trade area in the south side of the D.C. Metro area,” said Mitchell N. Schear, president of Vornado/Charles E. Smith. Vornado plans to replace the existing mall with the emerging Springfield Town Center, a new “urban style” mixed-use development of more than 5.7 million square feet over its 80-acre site. Plans call for 150 new stores in an open air “Main Street” design, including upscale restaurants, a cinema and a hotel. Demolition of the previous mall began last November, with only its anchor stores of Macy’s, Target and J.C. Penney remaining open during construction. First phase of the redevelopment is expected to reopen as a regional shopping center in late summer of 2014. The complete redevelopment, including offices, condos and apartments, is expected to be completed in a ten-year multiphased project. “Demographics are changing, people want to live where they work, and they’ll be able to do that in Springfield,” Manney said.

Office Growth On the office front, the congressionally-authorized Base Realignment and Closure Act (BRAC) of 2005 has caused the 20

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NVAR Realtor® update

area around the Franconia-Springfield Metro stop to explode. Plans for new construction are led by the relocation last year of the federal government’s National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) campus, consolidating the agency’s major east coast and Washington-area operations. Nearby, the Patriot Ridge complex developed by the Corporate Office Properties Trust (COPT) added 240,000 square feet of office space last September. General Dynamics gobbled up 103,000 square feet, nearly half of the new building. Future plans call for COPT to build an additional 400,000 square feet of office space at the former location of the Pallone Chevrolet car dealership. Not far away, Monument Realty has torn down homes in the old Lewin Park neighborhood, which has been rezoned into a Planned Development zone, to construct nearly 900,000 square feet of office space in four buildings as soon as tenants can be signed. Meanwhile, the Rubenstein Partners are building two 210,000 square foot offices in their corporate campus across from the Patriot Ridge development, which is 100 percent “spec,” with no signed leases. “This really speaks to the confidence developers have in the future of this market,” said Gerald L. Gordon, Ph.D., president and CEO of the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority. Another major elephant in the room is the pending Federal Government decision about where to relocate its FBI headquarters. One site being considered is property in Springfield near the NGA headquarters. For now, Springfield remains a tenant’s market. With overall office vacancy rates hovering around 16.4 percent, developers are waiting for tenants to commit to leases before they start to build. “The Springfield market, like many submarkets in Fairfax County, has higher vacancy rates than usual, but the long-term potential for Springfield and southeastern Fairfax County is the best it has ever been,” said Gordon. “We are excited to see it become an employment center that is producing net tax revenues for public services in Fairfax County.” JoAnne Fiebe, revitalization manager for the Fairfax County Office of Community Revitalization, says that some sites will be converted and upgraded, and as properties increase in value, parcels will be consolidated and transitioned to higher uses. “This will bring positive change for everyone,” Fiebe added. Commercial Realtors® have a role to play in the Springfield redevelopment. “Bringing tenants to lease the sites,” said Manney, “and educating the smaller landowners, like many of our [chamber] members, on how they can participate in the redevelopment of Springfield is an important part of the process.” Frank Dillow is chair of NVAR’s Realtor ® Commercial Council and is a vice president in Long & Foster‘s Commercial Division. He can be reached at NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2013


rpac bowling

Strike a Pose: Members Dress for Success at NV/RPAC Bowling Night Realtors ® were on a roll during the third annual Northern Virginia Realtors® Political Action Committee Bowling Night. Twenty teams of NVAR members and guests struck it rich at the sold-out April 8 event at Bowl America in Fairfax, raising $6,500 for NV/RPAC. Special thanks to Monarch Title for sponsoring this year’s event. The 80 participants, many in costumes, enjoyed a “happy half-hour,” followed by bowling and a lively awards ceremony.

Korean Forum members filled two teams, one of which snagged the first-place title. Pictured (l-r): Jaeno Oh* of New Star Realty, Janet Shin of Comstock Realty, Jonny Weon of Fairway Assets, Kevin Lee, Jenny Dewenter* of Long & Foster, Tracy Comstock of Comstock Realty, Moon Choi* of RE/MAX Allegiance and Rok Min* of Fairway Assets. *These bowlers took first place honors and received McCormick & Schmick gift cards. The other bowlers formed the Crazy Kimchi team.

The Guys and Dolls team from Long & Foster includes (l-r): Lisa Carlisle, Virgil Frizzell, Shawna Parde and James MacDonald.

Top Bowler Kevin Lee of Fairfax Realty claims his McCormick & Schmick gift card prize.

Westgate Realty of Falls Church fielded two teams of bowlers, one capturing second place and Mad Fox Brewery gift cards. Back row (l-r): Man Ngo, Vinh Nguyen, Don Nguyen*, Tuyet Bui, Anne Thai and Karen NguyenTran*. Front row (l-r): Natalie Phan*, Tony Nguyen* and Thai-Hung Nguyen. *These are members of the second-place Wild Wild West team.

Weichert team members sport crazy hats to bring them luck on the lanes. Pictured (l-r): Mark Richardson, Christine Richardson, Tom Mutton and Denise Longo.

McEnearney Associates team members are black & blue before the competition even begins. Back row (l-r): Martha Floyd, Candice Bower, Geri Deane and Doug Peed. Front row (l-r): Elena Pehrkon, Stephanie Hrutkay, Kate Jenson and Brian Blackburn.


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Cathy Baumbusch (center) accepts the last-place award on her team’s behalf from NVAR Chairman Jon Wolford (right). Team members were given plastic hockey sets and the suggestion to take up a different sport!

NVAR Realtors® have a ball! Pictured (l-r): Becky Owen of Long & Foster, Roger Nakazawa of RE/MAX Allegiance, Tom Meyer of Condo 1, Sita Kapur of Arlington Premier Realty and Lorraine Arora of Long & Foster.

NVAR Realtor® update

rpac breakfast

Breakfast of Champions

Realtors ® gathered for breakfast at the Tower Club in Tysons Corner on April 5 for the annual Major Donor Breakfast honoring members who invested $1,000 or more during the 2012 Northern Virginia/ Realtors® Political Action Committee campaign. The event provides an opportunity to network with the Northern Virginia congressional delegation and to hear from our NAR lobbyist, Ken Wingert. This year, Del. Dave Albo (R-Springfield), one of the chief architects of Virginia’s historic transportation funding legislation, also attended.

NV/RPAC Major Investors Meet face to face with Elected Officials

The annual Major Donor Breakfast offers NVAR members a unique opportunity to ask questions of area Congressmen and other honored guests. Realtors® discussed issues that included local transportation, the federal budget and mortgage finance reform.

Guests learned from Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-11) about budget savings that could offset the effects of sequestration, including increased enforcement for unpaid taxes. Connolly also spoke about entitlement reform, noting that Social Security solvency would be easier to address than Medicaid/Medicare issues. Pictured here (l-r): Major Investor Tracy Pless of Long & Foster, Congressman Connolly and Tim Aiken, Legislative Director for Congressman Jim Moran (D-8), who was unable to attend. NVAR Realtor® update

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Delegate Dave Albo (R-Springfield) (left) speaks with Major Investor Shane McCullar of Keller Williams. Del. Albo told the group that he has not been in favor of tax increases, except on the issue of transportation. He noted that there were simply no funds available for roads after other obligations were funded.



Investing in Northern Virginia: Fostering Regional Real Estate Opportunities

By Michele Lerner

The Association of Foreign Investors in Real Estate annual member survey showed that Washington, D.C. is once again among the top three cities in the world for real estate investment. While many foreign investors choose to purchase commercial real estate, the residential real estate market in Northern Virginia attracts both global and local investors. According to the National Association of Realtors®, investors purchased 22 percent of homes nationally in February 2013, and 23 percent of homes in February 2012. Inexpensive mortgage financing, relatively more affordable home prices in some areas and continued high demand for rentals makes real estate investing attractive in Northern Virginia, especially now that home values are rising. Scott MacDonald, president of Re/Max Gateway in Chantilly, says that the majority of investors in Northern Virginia own three to seven properties rather than buying properties in bulk. He says he works with a few investors who own more than 10 properties, but they are more the exception than the rule. “While investors have a reputation for paying all-cash, some of them use lines of credit based on revenue flow from other 24

properties they own to buy more homes,” says MacDonald. “Some investors make a down payment of 25 to 30 percent and then finance the rest.” Nicholas Lagos, broker/owner of Century 21 Gawen Realty in Arlington, says about 40 percent of investors pay cash for their properties and 60 percent finance the property but make a substantial down payment.

Who’s Investing in Northern Virginia? “The majority of our investors live in the D.C. area, although for the past four years we’ve also been working with international buyers,” says Vinh Nguyen, broker/owner of Westgate Realty Group in Falls Church. “A common scenario is for parents of international students studying in this area to buy a home for the student rather than rent temporary housing. We’ve started to expand by reaching out to friends of these students and their parents who want to own property in the U.S.” Lagos says there are typically five types of real estate investors in Northern Virginia, including: • Parents of college or graduate school students. “Often these parents live overseas and see this as a good investment, but they typically sell the property when the student graduates,” says Lagos.

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NVAR Realtor® update

Northern Virginia Rental Rates Lagos says rent demand and prices go through cycles but tend to rise over time. He says the average rent rose from $650 to $1,250 in the past nine years. “Rents in our area have been going up, which is one reason so many investors have been buying up property,” says Comstock. Whether rents will continue to rise is uncertain.

• Skilled workers on temporary visas. Lagos says many of these international workers are young and single and have visas that allow them to work for five or six years. The workers themselves or sometimes their parents purchase a home rather than rent, he says. • Long-term investors. Tracy Comstock, principal broker of Comstock Realty and Investment in Vienna, says many investors today are purchasing homes that they intend to own for decades to generate rental income when they retire. Lagos himself owns several properties that he purchased with 15-year mortgages and intends to keep to generate revenue once each mortgage is paid off. • Flippers. “When the market was down, investors came in with deep pockets and purchased foreclosures and short sales,” says Nguyen. “At that time about 50 percent of them would renovate and flip the property and about 50 percent would keep the properties as a long-term investment. Now, we don’t see flipping as often because investors want to wait for further price appreciation before they sell.” Comstock says in 2008-2010 she used to see investors buying four or five foreclosures a day, doing minimal improvements and then flipping them. Some of those investors chose to keep their properties and are using a property management company to handle them. NVAR Realtor® update

“The Washington Business Journal said something like 31,000 apartments are coming online in the next few years,” says MacDonald. “A glut of rentals could cause rents to go down and investors may start selling their properties.” MacDonald says rents increased the most in 2011 but dipped a little by May 2012. “We can’t be as aggressive in pricing as we were because we now have a two-month supply of rentals in this area, double what we had just a year ago,” says MacDonald. Lagos says the housing market adjusts every three or four years. “It’s all supply and demand,” he says. “Right now there are more available rentals and interest rates are great, so some renters are able to become homeowners instead.” Rental prices fluctuated by area in Northern Virginia during the fourth quarter of 2012, rising 4.31 percent in Alexandria compared to the fourth quarter of 2011, and 1.69 percent in Fairfax County and by just .10 percent in Arlington. However, rents dropped by 6.57 percent in Fairfax City and by 3.29 percent in Falls Church City during that same timeframe. Visit to view quarterly rental data for the NVAR region.

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Investors continued on page 26


investors continued from page 25

Lagos says those who used to flip are now more likely to keep a property for three to six years. • Accidental landlords. Katja Hom, director of business development for Avery-Hess Realtors® in Dunn Loring, says, “There are a lot of people in this area who relocate overseas for two or three years or longer for work but who intend to return to the area. They rent out their property in the interim for the income and to have someone take care of it.” Other accidental landlords are those who opted to rent their home rather than sell when prices dipped, says Lagos.


“People who purchased when the market was high will ride it out until home values go up,” he says.

Investor Impact on Traditional Buyers Investors and traditional buyers have different approaches to real estate. “Investors are numbers-focused and not emotionally attached to a property, so if they don’t get one property they know they’ll find another eventually and won’t be upset,” says MacDonald. “Investors tend to look at the lower price range between $250,000 and the $400,000s, not usually anything at $500,000 or above.”

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NVAR Realtor® update

Other buyers Comstock worked with, who were trying to buy a $200,000 condo, failed five times even though they had a 30 percent down payment and were fully approved for a conventional loan. “There were too many investors who were overbidding and putting in escalation clauses,” says Comstock. “Investors with cash can waive the appraisal contingency, too, which most first-time buyers can’t do.” Sellers often prefer investors to traditional buyers because there’s less concern about financing falling through or a low appraisal, says MacDonald. “This hurts first-time buyers now, but I think we’ll also have a problem finding move-up buyers in five to seven years because we won’t have very many people ready to sell then who were first-time buyers in the current real estate cycle,” says MacDonald. Comstock says competition between investors and traditional buyers is most heated over one and two-bedroom condominiums and in older communities with smaller homes priced under $400,000. “Buyers are mostly competing with other regular buyers for traditional town homes and single family homes,” says Comstock.

Property Management Companies: ‘DIY’ or Hire a Pro? While some investors choose to use a property management company, many prefer to save the fee and manage their portfolio of homes themselves. “Most of the investors I work with either have a relative living in the home or ask a relative in Northern Virginia to find them a tenant and to manage the property for them rather than use a property management company,” says Nguyen. The decision to use a property management company is usually based on cash flow. “Most investors manage their property themselves, especially if they just own a couple of investment properties,” says Hom. “Someone who owns 50 properties will usually hire someone to help them. The people who are most likely to use a property management company are homeowners who are temporarily relocating and want to move back into the property eventually.”

Increasing your Investor Business

MacDonald says many investors prefer to use a property management company because they want a buffer between themselves and their tenants. He says fees typically range from 6 to 10 percent of the monthly rent and are on a sliding scale according to the number of investment properties owned. “Sometimes people who own just one property want a management company so they can distance themselves from their tenants,” says MacDonald. “Usually someone who owns 15 to 20 or more properties will hire someone on their own to help them manage the properties rather than pay a management company.” Lagos uses his property management company to manage his own properties. “Most investors don’t want to have to worry about maintenance issues, emergency phone calls or tenant problems,” says Lagos. Property management fees are negotiable, Lagos says, and tax deductible for investors.

MacDonald says first-time buyers are getting blocked out of the market by investors. “The problem is that first-time buyers who want to transition from an expensive rental to become homeowners are having a hard time getting financing and are competing against investors looking at the same price range,” says Comstock. “It’s so frustrating for someone who’s paying $2,000 to rent a one-bedroom in Clarendon to be unable to buy a home. We looked at a one-bedroom listing in the neighborhood that I thought was overpriced, and it had six offers, two of them all-cash.” NVAR Realtor® update

“If you’re going after the investor market, you need to be fearless about cold calling and identifying properties before they go on the market,” says Hom. “You have to create opportunities for an investor and know your market really well. You should break down the numbers and provide a spreadsheet that demonstrates the upside of a purchase.” MacDonald suggests that Realtors® interested in working with investors think about starting a property management company and finding contractors to recommend to investors. Realtors® also need a good relationship with a lender who can work with potential investors, says Lagos. “You need to be an expert in your community,” says Lagos. “For example, you don’t want to advise someone to invest in a condo that’s having financial problems or one with a lot of investors already there. If the condo loses eligibility for financing for buyers then it could lose value.” Language skills are also a value add. “If you’re interested in working with investors from other countries and can speak another language, be sure to promote your language skills online through the MLS, NVAR, VAR and NAR,” says Nguyen. “You can also market abroad in your native language.” In a rising market, there are opportunities for Realtors® that transcend traditional buyer and seller representation. An experienced agent can provide prospective investors with a long-term perspective on home values and the attractiveness of a property to renters. Michele Lerner, a freelance writer based in the Washington area, has been writing about real estate and personal finance for more than 20 years for print and online publications.

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nar/nvar data

Invite Them In: Northern Virginia Consumers Value Open Houses the National Association of Realtors速 Northern Virginia Home Buyers and Sellers Survey offers an in-depth look at local consumer attitudes surrounding the home buying and selling experience. As these graphs of data from the 2012 survey reveal, prospective buyers in Northern Virginia give high marks to open homes as an available strategy in the home search process.


the home search process Information sources used in home search, by first-time and repeat buyers, and buyers of new and previously owned homes (Percent of Respondents)

BUYERS OF All Buyers

First-time Buyers

Repeat Buyers

New Homes

Previously Owned Homes

Northern Virginia Open house






U.S. Open house






Information sources used in home search, by age (Percent of Respondents) All Buyers


25 to 44

45 to 64

65 or older

Northern Virginia Open house






U.S. Open house






Frequency of use of different information sources (Percent of Respondents) Frequently


Rarely or not at all

Northern Virginia Open house




U.S. Open house



55 *Less than 1 percent

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NVAR Realtor速 update

ask me!

the NVAR “Ask Me!” Campaign sponsored a booth at the Northern Virginia Housing Expo on Saturday, Mar. 16. Hundreds of Northern Virginia residents filed through the exhibit hall at Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School in Falls Church to learn about homeownership opportunities in this region.

Ask Me!

Interested expo attendees flock to the “Ask Me!” booth for answers to their questions. Ambassador Amber Gould with At Home Real Estate (center) assists one of them.

To learn more about the “Ask Me!” campaign and the Northern Virginia market, visit Become an “Ask Me!” Ambassador. Next free training session: Wednesday, May 29 – Lunch & Learn featuring guest speaker Jerry Gordon, CEO of the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority. Register at NVAR Realtor® update

Listening is an important skill for Realtors®. Ambassador Christine Richardson of Weichert, Realtors® demonstrates while assisting a consumer during the March 16 expo.

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Ambassador Phil Cefaratti of Weichert, Realtors® explains to two booth visitors why now might be the right time for them to buy a home in Northern Virginia.


fair housing

Fair Housing Luncheon Highlights Need for Vigilance Realtors ®, government officials and fair housing administrators gathered at the Waterford Fair Oaks on April 11 to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act. The Fairfax County Office of Human Rights & Equity Programs, in collaboration with NVAR and the Equal Rights Center, offered a program that featured fair housing training, distinguished speakers and an awards presentation. Keynote speaker Jane C.W. Vincent, mid-Atlantic region administrator for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, opened her remarks with a public service video, one of a series sharing personal stories of citizens faced with housing discrimination. Visit to view the series. With nearly 10,000 fair housing complaints still filed each year nationwide, Vincent emphasized the need for continuing vigilance and enforcement. She noted that HUD is embracing technology in this effort with a recently-launched app to enable online filing of complaints. Visit to learn more.


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Victoria Lanteigne, corporate partnerships and training program manager for the Equal Rights Center in Washington, D.C., presented a training session about accessibility requirements.

Each year, the Fairfax County Student Human Rights Commission hosts a poster and essay contest in conjunction with Fair Housing Month for public high school students. This year, NVAR sponsored the contest, and NVAR CEO Christine Todd presented each winner with a $150 gift card. Nicole Rawlings, OHREP housing specialist (far left), is pictured here with (l-r) a member of the County’s Student Human Rights Commission, who accepted an award on behalf of the winning poster designer; the winning student essayist; keynote speaker Jane Vincent; and Todd.

NVAR Realtor® update

market forecast

Market Forecast: Clouds and Silver Linings Transit-oriented development paves the way for economic growth in Northern Virginia By Liz Milner

Three speakers explored the ever-increasing pace of change in our area at a Real Estate Finance & Settlement Forum-sponsored event: The Northern Virginia Housing Market in a Time of Economic and Demographic Transition. The March 28 program, billed as “an overview of the conditions that are transforming the housing market in our region,” was timed perfectly to coincide with the end of the first quarter of 2013, said NVAR’s Chairman of the Board, John Wolford.

A Short-Term Perspective Ryan Price, a research associate at George Mason University’s Center for Regional Analysis, addressed developments in our Northern Virginia housing market. Inventory is the

Phase 1 Silver Line stations are:

lowest since 2005 and scarce inventory, Price said, is the biggest story for 2012-2013. Active listings make up a little more than one month’s supply (less than five months’ supply is considered a seller’s market). The power of pent-up demand is fueling rising prices and double-digit sales growth throughout the entire region. The scarce inventory is spurring new construction; residential building permits are on the rise in the Metro D.C. area, Price reported. However, the pace of sales for detached single-family homes has been steady, but not stellar. Condo sales outpaced sales of both townhomes and detached single family homes. Price cautioned that while low inventory and pent-up demand are heating up the market, fear

• • • • •

McLean Station Tysons Corner Station Greensboro Station Spring Hill Station Wiehle Avenue - Reston East Station

of sequestration is having a dampening effect. Price increases will be more modest than in 2012, he predicted.

A Long-Term Perspective Lisa Sturtevant, deputy director of GMU’s Center for Regional Analysis, looked at long-term structural changes in this region’s economy and demographics to forecast their impact on the housing market. These changes will create a new “typical” homebuyer for our region, Sturtevant reported. The federal and professional sectors are shrinking while the education and health services sectors are growing. In the future, Sturtevant

said, we can expect the greatest demand for housing from people in the education and health services sector. While workers in the federal and professional sectors earn salaries of $90K or more, the people in the health and education sectors have jobs such as home health aide or nurse’s assistant and their salaries are more likely to be in the $50K range. “Because people in the health and education sectors tend to have lower salaries and less secure jobs than those in the federal sector and professional sector, this group is more likely to rent than to buy,” Sturtevant noted, “and we can expect that the typical homebuyer of the future Market Forecast continued on page 32 NVAR Realtor® update

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market forecast continued from page 31

will be more interested in buying a condo rather than a detached, singlefamily home.” “Echo boomers,” (a.k.a. “under 30s, Gen Y-ers”), Sturtevant said, also want to be homeowners

but can’t afford to buy in the short term. They are delaying marriage and child-bearing. They want smaller homes near public transportation, shopping and workplaces. “In the future we may see them

A Walkable Tysons • Significant residential development within a quarter of a mile of the four Tyson’s Corner metro stations. • Twenty percent of new development will be affordable housing; 80 percent will be market rate. • Goal to increase jobs from 100,000 to 200,000. • Much of existing office space will be replaced with new residential construction – up to 100,000 new housing units. • Parking spaces will be drastically reduced. There will be no big Metro parking lots; commuters will park at lots in outlying stations and take Metro into Tysons.


competing with retired baby boomers for closein housing,” she said. “We can expect increased demand for single-family rental homes from both retirees and younger workers.” Sturtevant concluded that although the market is rebounding, the future looks murky. Congress is making critical federal spending decisions piecemeal, so uncertainty slows down the recovery. Low inventories should pull sellers into the market and new construction should tempt them to buy up, Sturtevant predicted, but they may decide that making a move is too risky.

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The Silver Line Brian Winterhalter, a land use and zoning attorney with Cooley LLP’s Real Estate Group in Reston, described the new Silver Line Metro extension and how it will transform the NVAR region. Passenger service on the first leg of the 23mile long Silver Line will begin this December. When completed, the Silver Line will stretch from East Falls Church to Loudoun County with four stops in Tysons Corner. The Silver Line will not only link downtown Washington, D.C. with its outlying western suburbs and Dulles

NVAR Realtor® update

nvar elections

NVAR Board Election Process Begins

“We can expect increased demand for single-family

Leadership Takes You Further

rental homes from both retirees and younger workers.” Airport; County planners envision it as the means by which Fairfax County will be transformed from the present automobiledependent, suburban office park paradigm to more sustainable, transit-oriented development. Arlington’s Rosslyn/Ballston corridor is the model. Tysons Corner will become a walkable community with an extremely high density mix of residential, business and office space very close to Metro stations that would offer the “24-7 environment that younger workers want,” Winterhalter said. Six more stations are envisioned in Phase 2 of the project. These stations will serve the RestonHerndon area of Fairfax County, Dulles International Airport, and eastern Loudoun County. Three stations are in Fairfax County: • Reston Town Center • Herndon • Innovation Center The Master plan for Reston, which has not yet been approved by the

County, envisions transitoriented development at the newly completed Wiehle Avenue Station and at two as-yet unconstructed stations, Reston Town Center and Herndon. There would be significant residential development near these stations, Winterhalter said. While there would be a 2,300-space parking garage at the Wiehle Avenue Station, the other two stations would have no parking garages, only kiss ‘n’ ride lots. The Loudoun County stations are: • Dulles Airport • Route 606 • Route 772 In the Q&A session that followed, Sturtevant said that while the immediate economic future may be clouded with uncertainty, there are silver linings in store. Housing demand, she predicts, is going to be greatest where the jobs are, and in our area those new jobs will track the Silver Line.

Nomination forms for the 2014 NVAR Board of Directors will be available to download from beginning Monday, June 10, 2013. If you are interested in being part of NVAR’s governing board, or would like to nominate a qualified colleague, this is your opportunity.

Election Timeline Monday, June 10 - Nomination forms available on Monday, July 1 - Nomination forms due by 5 p.m. E.S.T. Tuesday, Sept. 10 - Election begins - Noon E.S.T. Friday, Oct. 11 - Election ends - Noon E.S.T.

Liz Milner is a freelance writer in the Washington, D.C. metro area. NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2013


leadership institute

Introducing. . . The 2013 NVAR Leadership Institute By Capricia Alston

industry leaders follow different paths to reach the top ranks in their profession. At NVAR, a select group of members is chosen annually to participate in a year-long Leadership Institute. We asked each of them to tell us something that other NVAR members might be interested to learn about them – and also to answer the following questions about their Leadership Institute experience. What have you learned about NVAR or the Northern Virginia real estate market since becoming part of the Leadership Institute? How will that knowledge help you to become an industry leader? Here’s what they had to say.


Miguel Calvo, with Prosperity Realty in Chantilly, has been a Realtor® for 11 years. When he is not selling houses, he serves as the vice president for the D.C. Metro chapter of the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals.

Matt Cockerham, with RE/MAX 100 in Springfield, has been a Realtor® for 19 years. He is a Northern Virginia native and began his career in real estate at the tender age of 20.

I thought that being part of a minority group would prevent me from even being considered for the NVAR leadership group; I was wrong. Not only have I learned about what NVAR does for Realtors® regarding lobbying, I’ve also had the chance to be part of activities for developing leadership and management skills, overviewing local community issues and also networking with other volunteer leaders. Thanks to the Leadership Institute, I now have an active position serving the Hispanic real estate professionals in our area and our community.

Through the Richmond legislative bus trip, I learned about the behind-the-scenes political process that we don’t see in our everyday activities. I think the greater your understanding of issues that affect your business, the better you understand the process and can advise your clients.

May :: June 2013

NVAR Realtor® update

leadership institute

Class Jamie DeSimone, with Keller Williams Capital Properties in Fairfax, has been a Realtor® for almost one year. I’ve learned how in-depth the work is that NVAR does with the legislative process, and the impact it has on the Northern Virginia housing market. It’s enabled me to share that knowledge with my colleagues. We have 150 agents and I know I’ve introduced them to some benefits they didn’t know they had access to through NVAR.

Lisa Dubois, with RE/ MAX By Invitation in Arlington, has been a Realtor® for eight years. Lisa loves to travel and says that no destination is too far. She will try just about any travel-related experience or food!

Angela Kasey, with Long & Foster Real Estate in Arlington, has been a Realtor® for six years. A self-described local food junkie, Angela is on a mission to find the best mom and pop shops wherever she goes.

Networking with other industry leaders has been invaluable. The Northern Virginia market is surging, and hearing about other agents’ market experiences is another resource for keeping updated on market dynamics.

Since becoming part of the Leadership Institute, I have learned how large of a role NVAR plays in the local and national real estate industry. It has been amazing to discover all of the resources we have at our fingertips. The more I learn, the more this information shapes how I do my business. Each year, NVAR helps me grow as a professional and the Leadership Institute enhances that.

Join the discussion: We want to know what all our members are thinking about issues that affect the Northern Virginia real estate profession. Please “like” us on Facebook (, follow us on Twitter (@nvar) and join our LinkedIn group ( NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2013


leadership institute Jinny Kim, with Fairfax Realty Inc. in Fairfax, has been a Realtor® for six years. She has a great interest in interior design. I’ve gained a number of facts and tips, which were truly beneficial for assisting my clients with their transactions. I’ve gained accurate information and learned about the exact application of rules to certain problems, which has helped me efficiently provide benefits to my clients. With this knowledge, I hope to help fellow Korean Realtors® with the right guidance towards success in the real estate business. Also, through NVAR’s Korean Forum, my colleagues and I will strive to keep people informed and educated.

Andy Musser, with Weichert, Realtors® in McLean, has been a Realtor® for four years. I now have a greater understanding of NVAR’s role and the critical part it plays in upholding the code of ethics, advocating on behalf of its members, providing educational opportunities, arbitration and legal hotline services. NVAR is one of the largest local Realtor® associations in the country and many associations look to NVAR for leadership. The institute is equipping me to be a more knowledgeable Realtor® and provide my clients with excellent service.

The objective of NVAR’s Leadership Institute is to familiarize future NVAR leaders with all aspects of the Realtor® family, including VAR, NAR and MRIS. Each of the mandatory Institute sessions is designed to give participants a unique look of the inner workings of the association. Candidates are nominated by staff, NVAR board members, committee chairs and past graduates of the program.


May :: June 2013

Roger Nakazawa, with RE/MAX Allegiance in Reston, has been a Realtor® for 33 years. Roger is also an agegroup All American USA track and field athlete in the high jump and triple jump. I’ve learned the importance of lobbying and NVAR’s political process. I’ve also learned why RPAC is essential, why campaigns like “Ask Me!” are important to our business and why it’s tantamount to our success in the real estate business to embrace technology and change our attitude toward the demands of the consumer, particularly the younger generation. The Leadership Institute knowledge helps one become an industry leader since the understanding of the complete real estate process is paramount to communication with fellow Realtors®, our associations and the public in general.

NVAR Realtor® update

leadership institute Veronica Seva-Gonzalez, with Lindsay Reishman Real Estate Inc. in Washington, D.C., has been a Realtor® for eight years. Veronica’s passion for real estate began through her family. Her father has always been involved in construction in Barcelona, Spain, and her parents started their own real estate company about 11 years ago. She has been fascinated with Gaudi’s architecture and Barcelona since she was a child. Being a leader in this industry is key for the future of real estate. Being part of the Leadership Institute has allowed me to learn first-hand from the best leaders we have. I don’t want to just become a leader; I also want to connect with other leaders. This is a large association and we need a lot more involvement. I always tell other Realtors® how important it is to be involved and contribute to RPAC. It is our job to communicate to every single member of our association what is being done by our leaders, staff and the Realtor® Party so that they understand how hard they are all working for us to have a healthy business. NVAR Realtor® update

Derrick Swaak, with TTR Sotheby’s International Realty in McLean, has been a Realtor® for 20 years. Derrick also serves as president of the Langley Swim and Tennis Club and the Langley Oaks Homeowners Association. I was very pleased to be asked to join the NVAR Leadership Institute. It has been a pleasure to get to know the other members of the 2013 class. Already, I have learned a great deal about the operations and organizations within NVAR, as well as its relationships with VAR, NAR, RPAC and MRIS. NVAR is one of the largest and most visible Realtor® associations in the country, and it is a fantastic professional opportunity to become actively involved with this organization.

May :: June 2013

Jason Yeo, with New Star Realty in Fairfax, has been a Realtor® for more than 12 years. I have learned about NVAR’s history, systems, missions and structures as well as how the association provides support to its members. After joining the Leadership Institute, I felt proud to be a member of NVAR because it allowed me a chance to improve myself and progress into holding a title in the real estate field. I’m a member of one of the best local Realtor® associations in the nation, which has helped me to expand my education level. The knowledge I’ve gained from the Leadership Institute has definitely helped me have a truly professional mindset and it drives me in a better way to provide the highest quality of service to clients.


marcus simon

Marcus Simon Kicks Off Campaign at NVAR HQ NVAR Affiliate Member Seeks 53rd District Seat The Northern Virginia realtors ® Political Action Committee was pleased to host the April 4 campaign kick-off for Marcus Simon, NVAR affiliate member, in his bid for the Virginia House of Delegates seat being vacated by retiring Delegate Jim Scott. An attorney and co-founder of Ekko Title, Simon has served as chairman of NVAR’s Standard Forms Committee and Attorney Roundtable.


Addressing a crowd of supporters in NVAR’s Mt. Vernon Room, Marcus Simon said, “We can work together across party lines when the issues are important enough to all of us. I plan to continue to look for opportunities to find wins for Northern Virginia, regardless of which party first takes the initiative.”

May :: June 2013

Colleagues show their support for Simon’s candidacy. Pictured (l-r) with Simon: NV/RPAC campaign co-chairs, Bob Adamson of McEnearney Associates and Virgil Frizzell of Long & Foster; and NVAR Chairman Jon Wolford of Weichert, Realtors®.

Simon is pictured with elected officials and mentors who offered words of support during his kick-off event. Pictured (l-r): Retiring Delegate Jim Scott; Fairfax County Board Chairman Sharon Bulova; Simon; and former Fairfax County Board Chairman Kate Hanley.

NVAR Realtor® update

new members NVAR Membership means . . . FREE access to online Legal Hotline! Lean more at Saad Ahmed Katie Alexander Ahmed Alhumigani Kara Allan Jason Allen-Rouman Amanda Alliger Maasum Anowar Mohammed Araim Susan Archer Kelly Arthur Qaiser Aziz Dae Bae Jamal Baluch Koy Banks Christopher Baratta Tsolmon Battsengel Sylvanus Bent L.A. Billups Cynthia Bishop Ann Blackford Jennifer Blackwell Todd Blaeuer Quan Bleda Clayton Bourges III James Boylan George Brown, II Kristopher Bunch Karen Bunch Heidi Burkhardt Ana Cano-Mirabal Alfredo Carrasco Annabel Carruthers Ruth Castro Charles C’debaca Clayton Chamberlin

Deborah Chase Kanwal Chaudry Ping Chen Jianhua Chen Melissa Chern Laurel Chinn Sean Christensen Erin Coleman Adrian Corbiere William Credle Karla Daniels Jasmine Darland Marco DeLucca Tam Do Sharon Dubrow Geoffrey Duckett II Paul Edmundson Kirk Eley Thewee Ellis James Evans Heather Farewell Christine Farid Karin Fourie Marybeth Fraser Nancy Gabro Robert Gaskins Roman Gelman Diane Gemma Jason Goeller Nikolai Goranov Howard Gordon Katherine Gorman Antonio Guernica Marcelo Gutierrez Jacqueline Hagen

Joseph Hakes Waheda Hakimzadah Seth Hall Pasha Hashemzadeh Olga Hawkins Lea Hedquist Bahir Henien Patrick Henry Heather Hickcox Richard Higgins Denis Holland Damon Holmes Susan Houghland Jennifer Howell Ruth Humphrey My Trinh Huynh Amir Ingram Juan Iparraguirre Dennis Ireland Michael Iriarte Elvira Jakovac Eun Jo Mercy John-Ekanem Michelle Johnson Gina Jones Wonmo Kang Aigerim Karimova Deirdre Kavolius Linda Kelly Denisse Kent Iram Khalid Dorota Khan Joo Kim Cynthia Kline Nand Kokle NVAR Realtor® update

Jacqueline Koval Rajasekhar Kovvali Patricia Landivar Anthony Lane Rodney Lantier Hang Lee John Leone Ivan Linero David Loken John Lombardi Randolph Lucas David Macfarlane Harry Mahon Matambira Makanda Naghmana Malik Reinaldo Martinez de Andino Vahid Mashkoufi Andrea Mattei Bruce McBarnette Amy McCarthy Debran McClean Thomas McCloud Rebecca McCullough Angela McDaniel Philip McGeorge Gregory McKinney Renee McKinney Dafne Milan Charlotte Mitchell Chulhoon Moon Jane Morrison Karen Moya Jerry Moyer Joseph Muldoon

May :: June 2013

Cindy Nelson Bich Long Nguyen Huong Nguyen Ana Nunes Elliott Oliva Rosita Osborne-Jackson Donna O’Shaughnessy Belinda Otih David Patterson Catherine Peck Jacob Pfizenmaier Jason Pogue Forrest Powars Sandra Ralph Maile Ramzi Kasia Ranis Patricia Rasser Mohammad Raza Anna Re Thomas Reishman Alex Reynolds Casey Rizer William Rodgers Mary Rohrbach Michelle Rose Peter Rowley Natalie Roy Thomas Ryan Shefali Sachdev Melissa Saddler Walid Salama Jaber Samad Joshua Sampong Claudia Sanchez Lisbeth Santos Enamorado

Josephine Saunders Eric Schnabel Grant Schulte Tatiana Schweibenz Fouzia Shah Kathleen Shaner Matthew Shoemaker Samia Shoja Praveen Siddu Leela Singh David Skiffington Shravan Sriramoju Veaceslav Stratan Wei Yi Sun Ramon Tariq Joseph Taylor Patricia Taylor Sharon Taylor Thomas Thieman Robert Thomsen Oleg Tikhonov Thomas-Minh Truong You Chuen Tsai Samar Tubbaji Theresa Twiford Grethel Valverde Twee Vo Luke Waldron Anna Walter Sundar William Renee Williams Shuli Yang Melissa Zebley Vasylyna Zenchenko Jing Zhang


class schedules


Onsite Pre-Licensing Education

Post-Licensing Education (PL)

Principles of Real Estate: Day 1-9 Time: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Date/Location: June 17 – 27, Fairfax

New member orientation Time: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Date/Location: May 23, Herndon June 7, Fairfax June 22, Herndon July 9, Herndon July 27, Fairfax

Principles Exam Prep Course Time: 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Date/Location: June 28, Fairfax Broker Law Time: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Date/Location: May 9 – June 13, Fairfax

Post Licensing (Day 1) - What’s In a Contract and Real Estate & Contract Law Time: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Date/Location: May 13, Herndon July 22, Fairfax

Broker Management Time: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Date/Location: June 27 – August 8, Fairfax

Post Licensing Time: Date/Location:


D.C. Continuing Education (CE)

Post Licensing (Day 3) - Fair Housing & Escrows Time: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. Date/Location: May 15, Herndon July 24, Fairfax

D.C. Fair Housing and D.C. Legislative Update Time: 9 a.m. – 4:15 p.m. Date/Location: June 18, Fairfax D.C. Fair Housing and D.C. Financing Issues Time: 9 a.m. – 4:15 p.m. Date/Location: July 16, Fairfax

Post Licensing (Day 4) - Listing Property and Working with Sellers Time: 1 – 5 p.m. Date/Location: May 16, Herndon July 25, Fairfax

Candice Bower

Post Licensing (Day 5) - Working with Buyer Clients and Marketing with Technology Time: 8:45 a.m. – 4:45 p.m. Date/Location: July 26, Fairfax May 17, Herndon

Named Virginia CRS of the YEAR each year, the Virginia Council of Residential Specialists chapter names a designee who exhibits unparalleled dedication to be CRS of the Year. On March 13, NVAR member Candice Bower, managing broker of McEnearney Associates in Leesburg and Middleburg, was tapped for 2012 CRS of the Year honors during the Virginia CRS Chapter Sell-a-bration in Charlottesville. Although unable to attend the event, Candice received a pin and engraved plaque to commemorate this honor. The Council of Residential Specialists is a non-profit organization dedicated to attracting and retaining those Realtors® who seek the knowledge, tools and relationshipbuilding opportunities needed to maximize their income and professionalism in real estate. The CRS of the Year honor is awarded to a Realtor® who demonstrates active involvement on state, local and chapter levels.

Onsite Residential Standard Agency (RSA Course) Residential Standard Agency (RSA course) Time: 9 a.m. – noon Date/Location: June 19, Fairfax July 10, Herndon Time: Date/Location:

1 – 4 p.m. May 14, Fairfax June 4, Herndon July 30, Fairfax

Fairfax HQ Accessibility:

Congratulations, Candice! 40

(Day 2) - Agency Law & Ethics 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. May 14, Herndon July 23, Fairfax

May :: June 2013

Underground parking is available with direct access to lower level classrooms. Elevator is available, accessible from main entrance on building’s west side. NVAR Realtor® update

Onsite continuing Education (CE) 16 Hr CE Time: Date/Location:

Onsite Technology Technology Brown Bag Lunch ‘n Learn: Google for Real Estate Time: 12 – 2 p.m. Date/Location: June 12, Fairfax

8:45 a.m. – 4:45 p.m. June 8, Herndon – Day 1 June 15, Herndon – Day 2 July 13, Fairfsx – Day 1 July 20, Fairfax – Day 2

Technology Brown Bag Lunch ‘n Learn: Do It Yourself Real Estate Photography Tips Time: 12 – 2 p.m. Date/Location: July 10, Fairfax

16 Hr CE - Evening Time: 6 - 9:30 p.m. Date/Location: June 18, Herndon – Part 1A June 20, Herndon – Part 1B June 25, Herndon – Part 2A June 27, Herndon – Part 2B July 9, Herndon – Part 1A July 11, Herndon – Part 1B July 16, Herndon – Part 2A July 18, Herndon – Part 2B Broker CE Time: Date/Location: Time: Date/Location:

Technology Brown Bag Lunch ‘n Learn: Open Houses Online and In-Person Time: 12 – 2 p.m. Date/Location: August 14, Fairfax Technology Brown Bag Lunch ‘n Learn: Do It Yourself Real Estate Photography Tips Time: 12 – 2 p.m. Date/Location: September 11, Herndon

8:45 a.m. – 12:25 p.m. May 15, Fairfax – Brokerage Risk and Liability June 13, Fairfax – Brokerage Risk and Liability July 17, Fairfax – Brokerage Risk and Liability

Onsite desigNations and certifications Senior Real Estate Specialist (SRES) Time: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. Date/Location: June 24, Herndon – ABR Designation Course - Day 1 June 25, Herndon – ABR Designation Course - Day 2 June 26, Fairfax – SFR Certification Course

1 – 4:45 p.m. May 15, Fairfax – Productive Agents and Offices June 13, Fairfax – Productive Agents and Offices July 17, Fairfax – Productive Agents and Offices

CE Time: 8:45 a.m. – 4:45 p.m. Date/Location: May 21, Herndon – 8 Hr Course June 11, Fairfax – 8 Hr Course

ONSITE SPECIAL Time: Date/Location: Time: Date/Location:

Time: 8:45 a.m. – 12:25 p.m. Date/Location: May 22, Herndon – Agency & Disclosure Under VA Agency Law June 10, Fairfax – Construction Essentials Time: 1 – 4:45 p.m. Date/Location: May 22, Herndon – The New Rules of Real Estate Finance June 10, Fairfax – Environmental Issues

GRI graduates

To register for a course listed or view a class description, visit NVAR Realtor® update

OFFERINGS 9 a.m. – noon August 8, Fairfax – Rules & Tools of Advertising - Part I 9 a.m. – noon August 15, Fairfax – Rules & Tools of Advertising - Part II

Graduate, Realtor® Institute is a Designation that offers in-depth technical and industry knowledge that will increase your marketability. Learn more in the NVAR Course catalog:

May :: June 2013



nv/rpac 2013 contributors

2013 NVAR Thanks Our Partners gold

2013 NV/RPAC We’re getting there, thanks to you John McEnearney NVAR

silver Shane McCullar Roger Nakazawa Jason Outten


friend DOMINION Title Corporation


Mary Bayat Tracy Baynard Patricia Buck Robyn Burdett David Charron Moon Choi Virgil Frizzell Todd Hetherington Jo Anne Johnson Sita Kapur Karen Kidwell Patricia Kline Thomas Meyer Susan Oh Tracy Pless Anne Rector Peter Rickert Fetneh Schacht Derrick Swaak Christine Todd Jon Wolford

May :: June 2013

William Amery Tracy Comstock Bic DeCaro Heather Embrey Nicholas Lagos Christina O’Donnell Mary O’Gorman Sherry Rahnama Christine Richardson Zinta Rodgers-Rickert Mario Rubio Trudy Severa Kristin Stone

Robert Adamson Candice Bower Russell Boyle Dianna Campagna Sue Chong Gwendalyn Cody Laura Fall Lisa Goodfriend Michael Huang Gye Shil Kim Cindy Lancaster Lisa Langlais Susan Leavitt Natalie McArtor McEnearney & Associates Marty Merriam Rebecca Owen Sarah Petcher Andrea Pierobon Audrey Shay

NVAR Realtor® update

Contributors List (April 3, 2013)

LaSonya Abney Jean Abood Fana Abraha Rafael Aguilera Barry Allbright Larry Anderson Are Andresen Kannan Annamalai Mary Anthony Lorraine Arora Gay Ashley Judy Austin Carlo Baietti Thomas Baker Vijay Balusu Barbara Bechtle Ann Beck James Bell Thomas Bellanca Johanna Bendfeldt Charles Bengel Edward Berenbaum David Bilups Carolyn Boaz Phil Bolin Jessie Braudaway Joan Bready Michael Briggs Jeanne Brown Karrina Brown William Buck Shirley Buford Toni Burger Christopher Call Miguel Calvo Paul Challis Jan Chang Louis Cironi Candyce Clanton Christopher Copeland Georgianna Copelotti Deborah Corbatto Barbara Costa Janet Croft Lois Delaney Jenny Dewenter Maureen Dunn Kathleen Eaton Anna Edwards Samer Elkasm Stephanie Ellis Patricia Evers Robert Ferguson Miriam Fernandez Larry Foster James Fox Paul Gale Reinier Giesberts Deborah Gill John Glorioso Brandon Green Donna Hamaker Rebecca Hanrahan

Melinda Hanson Anne Harrington Marye Jo Hartley David Hawkins Barbara Hendrickson Ruth HenriquezCampos Janet Hewitt Joseph Himali Margaret Ireland Subbarayudu Jakkampudi Matt Kahn Charles Kim Lauren Kivlighan Brian Klotz Robert Koenig Rolfe Kratz Charles Kunstbeck Frank Lackman Dana Landry Jill Landsman Anita Lasanksy William Lauler Diane Lee Kevin Lee Sherri Lee Francis Lee Ashley Leigh Diane Lenahan Glenn Lews Sonia Lieberman Lisa Lieu Thierry Liverman Scott MacDonald Ann Malcom Ali Mansouri Charles Martin Thomas Mazzei Pamela McCoach Vernee McFarlin David Michalski Elizabeth Millett-Yesford Puran Mittal Priscilla Moore Allene Murray Patricia Nassief James Nellis Thai Nguyen Maria Nicolau Robyn Nobert Maureen O’Hara Peggy Oremland Lynda O’Shaughnessy Eleanora Panizza Donna Paton Lindsey Peake Julie Pearson Brunhilda Peters Jerry Petitt James Phillips Thomas Pietsch

Mary Pilgrim Soonja Purdy Jane Quill James Quinn Julie Qureshi Himani Raheja Maria Ramirez Esin Reinhardt Moises Reyes Ross Richmond David Ridley Treena Rinaldi Bonnie Rivkin Mike Rokni David Rosenmarkle Elizabeth Ross Frances Rudd John Sabo Munshi Sadek Mohit Sahgal Mohamad Saleh Paul Saltz Gene Sampson Jeff Satre Peter Schlossberg Carole Schweitzer Aaron Seekford Isaac Seekford Ashish Sharma Heidelore Shea Linwood Shelton Carol Simmons Suzanne Simon Monica Sims Anise Snyder E. James Souvagis James Stakem Greg Stiger Jake Sullivan Jeffrey Surdyk Carol Sutfin Swindell Sutton Babak Taghavi April Taylor Gregory Tomlin Karen Trainor Rajiv Vashist Sanjiv Vashist Virgilio Vasquez Arthur Walters Kevin Wiles Sandra Wilkinson Ann Wilson Holly Worthington Kendra Wright Felicia Wu Tony Yeh Beom-Gu Yeo Alla Yun Louise Zinzi Benjamin Zurun Mary Zurun NVAR Realtor® update

May :: June 2013


appraisers & affiliates

Appraisers A+ A+ Appraisals 703-765-7579 AAA Appraisals, LLC 703-865-5303 AD Brown Appraisals 703-541-8212 Advantage Realty Services, Inc. 703-866-5050 Alan Lord & Associates, Inc. 703-768-1954 AREAS Appraisers, Inc. 703-866-6000 BARCO 703-730-2272 BFM, Inc. 703-670-2586 Bruce W. Reyle & Company, Inc. 703-273-7375 Capitol Appraisal Service, Inc. 703-691-8800 Chevy Chase Bank 301-907-5850 Chevy Chase Bank, FSB 703-648-9796 Classic Appraisals 703-675-2265 CMS Appraisals, Inc. 703-209-9123 Curry Appraisals 703-307-2579 D&R Appraisal Services, Inc. 540-751-2220 Dan W. Mori 703-339-6136 DCO Appraisal Services, Inc. 301-855-3886 Dennis J. Park 703-750-0560 Diane V. Quigley Appraisal 703-830-6973 Dickman & Associates 703-938-6633 Distinctive Homes Realty, LLC 540-338-4606


NB Valuation Group, Inc. 301-654-1719 Omni Appraisal Services 703-591-4001 Patricia C. Johnson, Appraiser 703-405-6070 Philip Arnold Appraisal Co., LLC 703-250-2132 Preston Hummer 703-929-0857 Real Estate Appraisals 4 You 703-794-9118 Renner, Hansborough & Reese 301-258-8181 Residential Appraisal Group, Inc. 304-724-6041 Riverpoint Appraisals 571-333-3747 Ryan Appraisal Services 301-694-6500 Sandra A. Le Blanc 703-629-6842 Silvey Appraisals, LLC 703-577-1946 Stewart Jarrett R E Appaisers & Consultants 703-671-3662 Suburban Appraisers & Consultants 703-591-4200 The Benjamin Group, Inc. 703-684-3577 VA-MD Appraisal Group, LLC 571-438-0604 Weichert Realtors 703-893-1500 William C. Harvey & Associates 703-759-6644 William Patten & Associates 703-642-8224 World Mortgage 703-934-5502

703-855-7403 703-383-6858

REALTORS Federal Credit Union, Division of NWFCU 703-709-8900 The Washington Savings Bank 800-843-7250 VHDA 804-343-5748 Wells Fargo Home Mortgage Annandale 703-333-5541 Wells Fargo Home Mortgage Arlington 703-642-2300

Bold Listings Are NVAR Partners

1031 Exchanges Realty Exchange Corporation


Client Gifts Your Gifted Pro


Commission Advance Commission Express


Environmental Services Capital Environmental Testing, LLC 202-257-9291 Local Energy Alliance Program (LEAP) 434-825-0232

Financial Services Acacia Acacia Federal Savings Bank Access National Bank Access National Mortgage Bank of America 44

703-893-0900 571-331-6374 703-963-1743 703-433-2205 703-451-9020 571-213-7249 703-216-5147 703-406-7621 703-754-6110 703-280-1637 703-709-5695 571-261-3367 703-644-9877 301-946-4865 703-753-5635 703-268-0756 703-403-2024 571-255-7096 703-963-3988 703-644-7772 703-255-6451 571-277-1671

Dittmar Realty Group Elite Appraisal Service F & F Appraisals Forte Appraisal Service, Inc. Gee Appraisers, Inc. Harry Graef Harry H. Arikan Hartmann Group Heiner Appraisal, Inc. Hendershott Appraisal Services Home Appraisers Homestar Real Estate Services Inman Appraisal Services, Inc. JDC Appraisals, Inc. Karas, Inc. Kinder Appraisal Services Lesley Omega Appraisers Lucky Appraisals McGraw Appraisals Metro Appraisal Services Monir Moshashaie Nancy M. Pruett

703-968-5685 703-871-1833 703-871-1300 703-319-2616

BB&T Mortgage BB&T Mortgage - Fairfax

Chase Home Mortgage Columbia 410-884-1088 Chase Home Mortgage Falls Church 703-641-6200 Embrace Home Loans, Inc. 800-833-3004 EverBank 571-933-6884 Fidelity Bank Mortgage 703-466-4050 First Home Mortgage Corporation 571-732-4270 First Home Mortgage Corporation Greenbelt 240-965-8153 George Mason Mortgage, LLC 703-802-5371 George Mason Mortgage, LLC Leesburg 703-443-1900 Homestead Funding Corp 703-734-2424 Intercoastal Mortgage 703-449-6828 Navy Federal Credit Union 888-842-6328 Navy Federal Credit Union 888-842-6328 PrimeLending 571-442-5193 Prosperity Mortgage 703-222-1800 May :: June 2013

Government Services Fairfax County


Home Cleaning Services Maid Brigade


Home Inspections AmeriSpec Home Inspections Anderson Inspection Consultants, Inc. House Inspection Associates Hurlbert Home Inspection

571-235-2755 301-855-3337 703-453-0442 703-577-7127

NVAR Realtor速 update

Affiliates Pillar To Post, Inc. - Herndon Pillar to Post, Inc - McLean Pillar To Post, Inc. - Oakton Red Star Home Inspection, LLC

703-657-3207 703-291-0344 703-402-2475 703-431-4339

Home Staging Services Decor Decorum M. Quinn Designs Preferred Staging Staged Interior

703-655-4789 703-354-6359 703-851-2690 703-261-7026

Moving & Storage Busy Buddies, Inc. 703-321-8564 Interstate Moving & Storage 703-569-2121 JK Moving 703-856-0636

New Home Builder Toll Brothers 703-753-6688 Willowsford 571-297-2000

Oil Tanks

Home Warranty Services

Pollard Environmental, LLC

2-10 Home Buyers Warranty 703-587-6735 First American Home Buyers 703-859-2700 HMS Home Warranty 800-843-4663 Keystone Home & Environmental Services 571-238-5201 Old Republic Home Protection 800-282-7131

Pest Control Services

Insurance Services Northwest Financial Victor Schinnerer & Co., Inc.

Allstates Termite Control Co., Inc. 703-578-3255 Asian Pest Services, LLC 703-752-1634 Barrier Termite & Pest Technologies 703-444-0496 Holiday Termite Pest Control 703-569-9333 My Exterminator, LLC 703-615-4028

703-810-1072 301-951-5495

Radon Inspection

123JUNK 703-400-7645 1-800-GOT-JUNK 703-934-4678 College Hunks Hauling Junk 800-586-5872

Real Estate Forms

Junk Removal

703-549-4820 703-941-3000 703-517-3333 703-506-9440 703-442-3890 703-299-3440

Locksmith Services National Lock & Key


Marketing/Media The Washington Post


Mold Services Clean 4 Clean

Accurate Radon Testing Arlington Radon

MB Associates

703-242-3600 571-331-2876


888-407-5716 NVAR Realtor速 update

Technology Services

DryHome Roofing & Siding, Inc. 703-891-4663

Centralized Showing Service 866-949-4277 Dotloop, LLC 513-257-0550 MRIS 301-838-7100

Settlement Services

virtual Tours

Advanced Title & Settlements 703-865-5444 Champion Title & Settlements 703-385-4555 Dominion Title Corporation 703-757-9500 Double Eagle Title Company 703-865-2519 Ekko Title - Centerville 703-448-3556 Ekko Title - Fairfax 703-560-3556 Ekko Title - Reston 703-481-6200 Ekko Title - Vienna 703-537-0800 Hometown Title & Escrow 703-691-1700 Key Title 703-437-4600 KVS Title 301-576-5580 MBH Settlement Group Alexandria 703-739-0100 MBH Settlement Group Annandale 703-852-3000

Captivate with Video Mouse on House


Legal Services Brincefield, Hartnett, P.C. Joseph A. Cerroni, Esq National Real Estate Law Group, PLLC Pesner, Kawamoto, Conway Peterson, Noll, & Goodman PLC Rich Rosenthal Brincefield et al.


MBH Settlement GroupArlington 703-237-1100 MBH Settlement Group Burke 703-913-8080 MBH Settlement Group Chantilly 703-277-6800 MBH Settlement Group Fairfax 703-279-1500 MBH Settlement Group Kingstowne 703-417-5000 MBH Settlement Group McLean 703-734-8900 MBH Settlement Group Reston 703-318-9333 MBH Settlement Group Vienna 703-242-2860 Monarch Title - Leesburg 703-771-0800 Monarch Title - McLean 703-852-1730 New World Title & Escrow 703-691-4330 Provident Title & Escrow 703-239-9600 Republic Title, Inc. 703-916-1800 RGS Title 703-903-9600 RGS Title - Alexandria 703-519-7600 Stewart Title & Escrow, Inc. 703-352-2935 The Settlement Group, Inc. 703-642-6002 The Settlement Group, Inc. - Burke 703-250-9440 Universal Title 703-658-1369

May :: June 2013

703-585-7772 301-972-3201

(Last updated April 15, 2013)

Interested in becoming an NVAR Partner or have a correction to this list? Please contact Tracy Reynolds at 45

ask nvar

‘Coming Soon’ Listings, License Transfers: Your Questions Answered By Sarah Louppe Petcher


How long can an agent have a “Coming Soon” sign up before entering the property into the MLS? Isn’t it an illegal pocket listing for a “Coming Soon” sign to be up for more than 48 hours?


Sarah Louppe Petcher: There are no regulations on how long a “Coming Soon” sign may or may not be posted. If a seller instructs the agent, in writing, to put up a “Coming Soon” sign on the property and hold off entering the property into the MLS for two weeks, there is no problem. There is a two-part test to determine whether something is an unethical pocket listing: 1. Has the seller instructed his or her agent, in writing, to begin marketing the property before entering it into the MLS, AND 2. Is the pre-marketing for the sole benefit of the seller, and not for the benefit of the agent? If both of these questions are answered “yes,” then there is not an unethical pocket listing.

If you want to learn more about the right way to market properties before entering them into the MLS, attend the one-hour session on this subject at NVAR’s June 5 Legal Summit! See page 43 for details. Sarah Louppe Petcher is general counsel for NVAR.

By Amanda Arwood

Q. A.

Why is it taking so long for my license to transfer from one broker to another?

Amanda Arwood: A concern among Realtors® who change firms is the amount of time it takes for their licenses to become active with their new brokerages. Christine Martine, Executive Director at DPOR, said that in most cases, delays are caused by forms that are not correctly filled out. Here are some things to watch out for: • Use the most current form, which can always be found on the Real Estate Board’s website ( Boards/Real-Estate) in the Forms and Applications section. At press time, the most current Active/Transfer application is dated 2/27/2013. • Remember to enclose the $60 fee; DPOR accepts Discover, MasterCard and Visa, but not American Express. And of course, be sure to have sufficient funds or available credit. • Make sure your current license isn’t expired. You’ll need to renew it before transferring. • Be sure you have the correct license number for the new firm, especially if the new company has different types of businesses with similar license numbers (e.g., full service and referral firms). • Verify that the firm you are transferring to and its principal broker are in good standing. You can find this information at • The new principal or supervising broker must sign, and you must send the original application – the board does not accept faxes. • Attach a copy of your current license to help speed up the process.

Do you have other real estate-related legal questions? Submit them through NVAR’s member-only online Legal Hotline at 46

Please note that DPOR is still in the process of upgrading its site to make this process run more smoothly. Stay tuned for updates as these improvements occur. Amanda Arwood is vice president of marketing & communications for the Virginia Association of Realtors ®.

May :: June 2013

NVAR Realtor® update

May/June 2013 Update Magazine  

This is the May/June 2013 issue of NVAR's Update magazine.