Page 1

A WORD FROM THE ASSOCIATION DIRECTOR PAGE 8

PREDATORY LENDING PAGE 12

WORKING WITH HOUSING COUNSELING PAGE 13

IN MEMORIAM PAGE 20

REGISTER TODAY! VAREP.NET/CONVENTION/REGISTRATION

OCTOBER 13 - 15, 2019 ORLANDO, FLORIDA HYATT REGENCY ORLANDO


VAREP NATIONAL NEWS

A Letter From Our President

ROGER THAT AUGUST 2019

Dear VAREP Members, I present you “RT – ROGER THAT – August

EDITORIAL

2019” E-Zine Newsletter. This is the best way for VAREP National to communicate happenings

PUBLISHER USA Homeownership, Inc. DBA Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals

within our organization to our membership.

CRE ATIVE

VAREP experienced tremendous growth and

SENIOR DESIGNER Jesus Lopez

recognition in 2019 for the important work that we do. Each of you should be proud and stand tall knowing that your passion to empower veterans to realize the American Dream of homeownership has enabled VAREP

GRAPHIC DESIGNER Nick Preston SENIOR WEB DEVELOPER Francisco Labias

to be recognized by key leaders in the real

WEB DEVELOPER Freddie Lin

estate, financial, and government sectors as the

CO NTAC T VAREP

authority on, and voice of, military and veteran

HEADQUARTERS 951·444·7363 info@VAREP.net 495 E. Rincon St., Suite 110 Corona, CA 92879

financial-literacy and homeownership. VAREP ACCOMPLISHMENTS FROM 2014 - 2019 •

34 homes donated mortgage-free to deserving heroes across America.

1,000 military and veteran families realized the American Dream of homeownership through

w w w . V A R E P. n e t

our programs and services. •

10,000 real estate and lending professional were trained as a result of the 80 live events and online membership training.

• •

3,100 military and veteran families educated about homeownership, financial literacy, and

ABOUT SON

the VA loan program through the live Veteran Housing Summits events hosted by VAREP

Son Nguyen is the founder and president of the

local chapters across the country.

Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals

361 military and veteran families were provided food, utilities payment, rent back payment,

(VAREP). Mr. Nguyen creates, implements, and

basic supplies, clothing, and blankets during the 2018 holiday season. This was made possible

overseas the programs within VAREP including

through our VAREP Cares program implemented by the VAREP local chapters.

working with government agencies and policy makers

$70,000 in the form of housing assistance grants for down-payment, closing costs, and adaptive

to create and reform veteran housing policy to remove

needs. This was in partnership with the Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA).

barriers to homeownership.

$5 .6 million spent on home rehabilitation for mortgage-free donations and veteran first resale

He is frequently called upon as a subject-matter expert

program.

by government agencies, the real estate industry, the lending industry, and real estate trade organizations to

HOW TO EXPLAIN WHO WE ARE AND WHAT WE DO

consult on a variety of veteran housing issues.

I frequently receive phone calls from our membership on how to explain VAREP as an

Mr. Nguyen has more than 19 years’ experience in real

organization. Depending on your audience, you may want to adapt the points listed below to

estate, public speaking, supplier diversity, curriculum development, and non-profit management. His record

introduce VAREP. •

demonstrates innovation and leadership at the highest

VAREP is a 501.c.3 nonprofit organization that was founded to directly educate the 1.4-plus million active military and 22-plus million veterans on sustainable homeownership, financialliteracy education, VA loan awareness, and economic opportunity.

VAREP is the only organization that educates military and veteran families on the importance of financial health on the road to homeownership.

VAREP is the only organization that educates the real estate practitioner on the important housing-policy and lending initiatives that affect the military and veteran communities.

VAREP Comparison to Other Veteran Nonprofits The comparison chart to the right shows that we fill a much needed gap in financial-literacy and

level. Mr. Nguyen established VAREP as a housing non-profit for vets, by vets. He believes VAREP’s proactive stance of providing financial-literacy education and advocating homeownership can greatly impact homelessness among the veteran community, by both reducing the current epidemic and preventing future occurrences, one veteran at a time. Mr. Nguyen entered the Navy in 1996 and served as a Radioman on the USS Vincennes (GC-49) and USS

housing components that the other veteran service organizations simply do not offer…In other

Constellation (CV-64). A proud service-connected

words: We complement them and do not compete with them.

disabled veteran, Mr. Nguyen holds a bachelor’s degree

Our organization has only scratched the surface of creating awareness and having people rethink

in Public Relations from of the University of Florida

how to better serve underserved military and veteran housing needs. To a great 2019...Cheers!

and a Master’s in Organizational Management. He currently resides in Corona, CA, with his wife, son, and Labrador.

Son Nguyen VAREP Founder and President

2


VE TER AN NON-PROFIT COMPARISON CHART Target Audience

VAREP Veterans = 22+ Million Active Duty = 1.4+ Million

MILITARY WARRIORS FOUNDATION Wounded Warriors OEF, OIF, ND = 51,849

OPER ATION HOMEFRONT Active Dut y Family of E1 - E6 = 1.1 Million

WOUNDED WARRIOR PROJECT Wounded Warriors OEF, OIF, ND = 51,849

USA CARES Post 9/11 Servicemembers & Family

Financial Assistance

X

X

Emergency Food

X

X

Emergency Home Repair

X

X

Critical Baby Items

X

X

Home and Appliance Repair

X

Furniture and Household Items

X

Local Moving Assistance

X

Apartment Transitional Housing

X

X

Permanent Housing Placement

X

X

Employment Job Board

X

Rehabilitation with Recreational Therapy

X

X

X

X

Peer-to-Peer Counseling

X

Family Support Retreats

X

Peer Mentoring

X

Information Technology Training Academy

X

Financial Literacy Education

X

VA Home Loan Program Education

X

Housing Education

X

Housing Counseling

X

Credit and Debt Management Education

X

Credit and Debt Management Counseling

X

Military and Veteran First Look Affordable Housing Purchase Program

X

Mortgage Free Donated Homes for Wounded Warrior and Spouses of Deceased Warriors

X

X

X

X

X

Community Outreach

X

X

X

Live Community Housing, Financial Literacy, and Employment Fair Outreach Events

X

REALTOR, Housing Professional, and Lender Military and Veteran Certification Course

X

Military and Veteran Friendly Database

X

Advocate with a Written Policy Plan

X Military and Veteran Housing Lending Policy

Housing and Lending Policy Conference

X

Military and Veteran Financial Literacy, Housing, and Employment Resource Center

X

X

X

X Wounded Warriors

NOTE: The no n-profit comparison chart does not list the national minority real estate trade organizations including AREAA, NAHREP, and NAREB because we are not structurally set up as a trade organization. We have our membership whom we educate to better serve the military housing needs, but ultimately we are all here to serve the military and veteran communities.

3


AUGUST 2019 TA B LE O F CO N T E N T S

Heroes For Hero Dogs....................................4 VAREP Chapter Map.....................................6 CHECK PRESENTATION TO HERO DOGS AND ACCEPTED BY NIKKI CHARLES, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR. A Word from The Association Director...........8 Predatory Lending........................................12

of the puppies. The Nevada

Working With Housing Counseling...............13

chapters joined forces and were the big winners of the

Legislative Corner.......................................16

night. They chose to name the

In Memoriam...............................................20 VAREP Faces in the Crowd............................................25

puppy “Nevada” after Chief PHASE 1: 6 SPONSORED PUPPIES

HEROES FOR HERO DOGS

2019 NATIONAL EVENT

he received 5 Navy and Medals, 12 Navy and Marine

Chase Bank, selected Hero Dogs

Corps Achievement Medals,

as our most recent grant recipient.

and various other medals,

Hero Dogs is a Maryland based

deployment and unit awards.

organization that improves the

highly skilled canines, free of charge with lifetime support of the partnership. The $10,000 grant

VAREP.NET/CONVENTION/REGISTRATION

During his 16 years of service

Campaign in partnership with

placing service dogs and other

REGISTER TODAY!

from Anchorage, Alaska.

Marine Corps Commendation

heroes by raising, training and

OCTOBER 13 - 15, 2019 ORLANDO, FLORIDA HYATT REGENCY ORLANDO

who joined the Navy in 1994

The Stop, Drop and Push

quality of life for our nation’s

NATIONAL CONVENTION

Petty Officer Chris Nevada

The Stop, Drop and Push Campaign is excited to welcome Nevada to the VAREP family. You can follow Nevada’s training on Instagram @herodogsnevada.

will go towards phase one training for 6 puppies. At the Policy Conference, a friendly auction raised additional money for the Stop, Drop and Push Campaign and the highest bidders were able to name one NEVADA - VAREP SPONSORED PUP


PROMOTING VETERAN STABILITY TO PREVENT VETERAN SUICIDE WHO WE ARE The Stop, Drop and Push Campaign (SDPC) is part of the Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals’ (VAREP) philanthropic platform of giving back (VAREP is a 501c.3 non-profit focused on housing for veterans). Although our focus may be on veteran housing, we cannot stand idle while our brothers and sisters are part of the 22 veteran suicide statistic.

HISTORY OF THE NUMBER 22

STOP, DROP & PUSH MISSION

In 2012 the Department of Veterans Affairs

To lower the 22 veteran lives lost each day

released a 59-page report outlining veter-

due to suicide by educating the public about

an suicide. The report states the numbers

veteran reintegration issues; connecting al-

of Veterans who die from suicide each day

ternative veteran therapy providers to those

has remained relatively stable over the

who need treatment; and provide the neces-

past 12 years (varying from 18 -22 per day).

sary funding to ensure treatment is possible so our heroes will rediscover purpose and lead productive lives.

ALTERNATIVE THERAPY Research has determined in addition to medication and traditional therapy, a holistic approach including alternatives therapies such as existential/transpersonal, animal-assisted psychotherapy and play therapy (examples include martial arts, fly fishing, mountain climbing and rafting) are important as part of the road to recovery for many veterans.

951-268-1517 | info@stopdroppush.org

w w w.S TOPDROPPUSH.org

5


NOTE WORTHY

SESSIONS

MIC DROP

WORTHY KEYNOTE SPEAKERS

GENERAL SESSIONS • THE STATE OF VAREP & DEVELOPING RESILIENT LEADERS • THE POWER OF INTENT – STAYING RELEVANT IN AN EVER-CHANGING DIGITAL WORLD • INSPIRE, CONNECT, ACHIEVE! HOW TO CREATE A DIGITAL AND SOCIAL MARKETING STRATEGY THAT CONVERTS TO REAL BUSINESS

BREAKOUT SESSIONS

BRIAN FLEMING Combat-Wounded Afghanistan veteran and suicide bombing survivor

• APPLYING LEADERSHIP STRATEGIES TO BOOST YOUR BUSINESS • BUILDING AN ECOSYSTEM OF TEAMWORK AND COLLABORATION • CHARTING THE NEW 2019 VA LANDSCAPE FOR REALTORS AND LENDERS • AM I READY TO LEAD? – ASSESSMENT OF DESIRE, SKILLS, AND TOOLS • PERSONAL TOUCH BRANDING IN A DIGITAL WORLD

PAM MOORE Forbes Top 5 Social Media Power Influencer

EXPO: CONNECT & NETWORK

JASON SCHECHTERLE Retired Phoenix Police Detective with line of duty burn injuries and subject of a book, Burning Shield.


REG IST ER NO W!

The 2019 VAREP National Convention will educate, develop, and empower current and future leaders within the VAREP organization. The National Convention equips VAREP leaders with the necessary tools to serve the military and veteran housing needs.

SEE YOU IN ORLANDO! varep.n et /convention

7


VAREP CURRENTLY HAS

45 CHAPTERS LOCATED IN 21 STATES ACROSS THE UNITED STATES

ACTIVE CHAPTERS Arkansas

VAREP River Valley - Founded on September 18, 2018

Arizona

VAREP Phoenix Chapter - Founded on September 3, 2013 VAREP Tucson Chapter - Founded on January 28, 2015

California

VAREP Coachella Valley Chapter - Founded on August 4, 2016 VAREP East Bay Area Chapter - Founded on August 24, 2017 VAREP Los Angeles Chapter - Founded on April 23, 2014 VAREP Orange County Chapter - Founded on March 11, 2013 VAREP Riverside Chapter - Founded on June 17, 2013 VAREP Temecula Chapter - Founded on January 22, 2019 VAREP Sacramento Chapter - Founded on June 4, 2013 VAREP Fresno Chapter - Founded on January 30, 2019 VAREP San Bernardino Chapter- Founded on August 14, 2014 VAREP San Diego Chapter - Founded on July 29, 2013 VAREP Yuba-Sutter Chapter - Founded on January 11, 2018

Colorado

VAREP Denver Chapter - Founded on August 14, 2014

Florida

VAREP Miami Chapter - Founded on July 13, 2015 VAREP Central Florida Chapter - Founded on April 14, 2015 VAREP Pinellas County Chapter - Founded on December 3, 2015 VAREP Broward Chapter - Founded on July 15, 2015 VAREP Treasure Coast Chapter - Founded on June 30, 2017 VAREP Jacksonville Chapter - Founded on August 28, 2018

Georgia

VAREP Atlanta Chapter - Founded on January 22, 2019

Hawaii

VAREP Honolulu Chapter - Founded on April 04, 2014

Idaho

VAREP Des Moines - Founded on October 3, 2017

Kentucky

VAREP Louisville Chapter - Founded on June 14, 2018

Maryland

VAREP Annapolis Chapter - Founded on August 23, 2018

Michigan

VAREP Mid-Michigan City Chapter - Founded on November 14, 2017

Minnesota

VAREP Twin Cities Chapter - Founded on March 11, 2018

Missouri

VAREP St Louis Chapter - Founded on March 10, 2017

Nevada

VAREP Las Vegas Chapter - Founded on August 30, 2013 VAREP Northern Nevada Chapter - Founded on March 4, 2015

Oklahoma

VAREP River Valley Chapter - Founded on January 1, 2018

Oregon

VAREP Central Oregon Chapter - Founded on February 12, 2019

Texas

VAREP Austin Chapter - Founded on July 2017 VAREP DFW Chapter - Founded on December, 2015 VAREP El Paso Chapter - Founded on April 6, 2017 VAREP Houston Chapter - Founded on March 30, 2015 VAREP San Antonio Chapter - Founded on December 10, 2013 VAREP New Braunfels Chapter - Founded on August 8, 2018

Virginia

VAREP Treasure Valley Chapter - Founded on May 17, 2018

VAREP Hampton Roads Chapter - Founded on September 5, 2018 VAREP Northern Virginia Chapter - Founded on May 30, 2018

Illinois

Washington

VAREP Chicago Chapter - Founded on June 21, 2016 8

Iowa

VAREP Tacoma South Sound Chapter - Founded on December 15, 2014

Washington D.C.

VAREP D.C. Metropolitan Area Chapter - Founded on June 11, 2014


25 CHAPTERS IN FORMATION Alaska

VAREP Alaska Chapter - Coming 2020

Arizona

Hawaii

VAREP Big Island Chapter - Coming 2019 VAREP Maui Chapter - Coming 2019

Pennsylvania VAREP Philadelphia Chapter - Coming 2019 VAREP Pittsburgh Chapter - Coming 2019

VAREP Chandler Chapter - Coming 2020 VAREP Prescott Chapter - Coming 2019

Kansas

VAREP Wichita - Coming 2020

California

South Carolina

Maryland

VAREP Florence Chapter - Coming 2019

VAREP Silicon Valley Chapter - Coming 2019 VAREP Modesto Chapter - Coming 2019 VAREP Oceanside Chapter - Coming 2019 VAREP San Gabriel Chapter - Coming 2019

Colorado

VAREP Colorado Springs Chapter - Coming 2019

Florida

VAREP Pensacola Chapter - Coming 2019

Georgia

VAREP Augusta Chapter - Coming 2019

VAREP Southern Maryland - Coming 2019

Massachusetts

VAREP Boston Chapter - Coming 2020

Michigan

VAREP Detroit Chapter - Coming 2019

New Jersey

VAREP New Jersey Chapter - Coming 2019

North Carolina

VAREP Wilmington Chapter - Coming 2019

Tennessee VAREP Nashville Chapter - Coming 2019

Washington VAREP Vancouver Chapter - Coming 2019 VAREP Bremerton Chapter - Coming 2019 VAREP Seattle Chapter - Coming 2019

Wisconsin VAREP Milwaukee Chapter - Coming 2020

9


A Word from the

Association Director Carla Lemon DEAR VAREP CHAPTERS AND MEMBERS: As the VAREP Association Director, it is an honor to help chapters develop and grow. As I work with the different chapters fundraising events, it allows me the opportunity to connect the chapters to learn from each other’s efforts collectively from their life experiences. In speaking with Lloyd Steere, President of the VAREP East Bay Chapter, he mentioned they decided to organize their first Poker Run Fundraiser. I recommended he speak with the Tacoma Chapter as they were planning their Second Annual Poker Run. They connected and spoke of their different lessons and both chapters have shared their experiences below.

10

Both events looked similar out of the gate. As life goes sometimes, weather changed the look and direction for both chapters, with each chapter having successful events. Both events bonded different organizations together bringing overwhelming results on different levels for their events.

East Bay’s First Poker Run Experience By: Lloyd Steere, East Bay Chapter President For the East Bay Chapter, 2019 was shaping up as our best year as a Chapter. We voted to add a 2nd charity event in May and Memorial Day seemed like the perfect fit. Our chapter is surrounded by wine, cars, and motorcycle enthusiasts. After talking to the Washington State Director, we were excited about using the Tacoma Chapter’s template for a motorcycle Poker Run as our added fundraiser to support our local veterans and active-duty communities. We set the date early, and started marketing 5 months in advance of the event. We were fortunate to


sign-on numerous sponsors for the event, a generous number of riders, and most importantly, had secured five (5) locations as ride stops for the run. As the date approached, everyone was excited to kickoff what was sure to become an annual event for our community. Two weeks before the event something happened that had not occurred in decades. It started to rain. And it didn’t rain for a couple of days . . . it deluged for a few weeks! As the date approached, we kept everyone abreast of the situation and ensured them that a decision about the event would be made as late as possible, to preserve our 1st Annual Poker Run. In the meantime, I contacted a friend of mine who heads up the Pacific Coast Corn hole (PCC) League, and asked if he could put together an “emergency” corn hole tournament should the weather decide to not cooperate.

while the bikers were put on standby, the corn hole community rallied around Jeff’s call for help. Saturday morning, with the help of PCC, our sponsors, our board, and our community, we ended up with over 70 participants who raised nearly $3,500 for our local veteran community, AND, another $600+ for our Stop, Drop and Push Campaign. Thanks to our consistent messaging to our community, the assistance of some VERY veteran-friendly and motivated people, and a little bit of rain, the East Bay Chapter turned an unfortunate set of circumstances into a huge win for our local vets, and our national PTSD foundation.

– Lloyd Steere, VAREP East Bay Chapter President

At 10:00AM, on Friday, the day before the Poker Run, I had to make the unpopular call that the Poker Run would be put on hold, due to weather. I immediately picked up the phone and called Jeff, at PCC, and asked for help. Between the two of us, we had an event arranged and posted on Facebook within a couple of hours. And, 11


Tacoma’s Second Year Poker Run Experience

Eatonville Eagles. At the Eagles, everyone enjoyed a pulled pork taco dinner, drinks, a silent and live auction followed by The Big Bear live band with dancing.

By: Jaimie Garrett, WA State Director & Kelly Hendrickson, VAREP Tacoma President 2019 has been a very busy and fun year for the Tacoma South Sound Chapter! July 20th the Chapter hosted their 2nd Annual Charity Poker Run. The sunny day warmed the hearts of many new VAREP supporters and bikers. Combined efforts raised over $12K to support the chapter, local Veterans and the Stop Drop & Push Campaign. Over 120 bikers attended the all-day picture perfect day for riding. Event kicked off at 8:00 AM with expansive views of the Puget Sound at the Topside Bar and Grill in Steilacoom, WA. Topsides owner, John O’Reilly, once again donated breakfast to all that attended. We were featured on Q13 News from the top deck of the first stop and kick-stands went up at 10:30 AM. A loud roar of the bikers rumbled through town headed towards Old Hwy 99 Company Bar in Grill in Tenino, then Walt’s Place in Yelm and the final stop at the 12

All who attended assured us the 3rd annual Poker Run will be bigger and better than ever! We met new members wanting to help with our holiday events, new sponsors moving forward and connected with Got Your 6 Fishing, a non-profit that helps those that suffer as a result of military service and helps the veteran take a step toward healing. All connections made move to help our Veterans collectively.


What we learned from the first year:

A Word from the

Riders gave feedback they wanted to end sooner and have a live band so we had one less stop and brought out the band -- what a hit! Most riders booked hotels or had their motor homes in Eatonville to avoid travels after a day of riding and night of partying. Safety was an important concern that we addressed.

Association Director

It took 9 months of advanced planning and we made sure to check local calendars to not overlap other well established Poker Runs.

Highlights this year were: More sponsors than last year, creation of a custom event t-shirt, generous number of riders many more donations for raffles and auction items. Our consistent messaging to our community, the assistance of some VERY veteranfriendly and motivated people, a lot of sunshine, beautiful water and mountain views, the Tacoma South Sound Chapter had an amazing event. Most importantly, we established new friendships and met new sponsors that believe in the VAREP vision and mission to help us grow and stay on track for an anticipated VAREP Annual Event to help local Veterans.

Carla Lemon It can be stressful and overwhelming to organize and execute a major fundraising event. The amount of stress on the Chapter Directors is directly equal to the amount time placed in preplanning, regular meetings and organizing that each Director puts forth as a Team in support of each other to present a successful fundraiser. Each chapter was faced with diversity and improvising the first year. Each year the work becomes easier as the annual events turn into a well-oiled machine that the local communities come to expect and look forward to participating in. If you lead with a service heart, with mission first, reach out for guidance to grow and stay the course, you will make a difference, One Veteran at a Time. Thank you to Lloyd, Jaime and Kelley, along with the East Bay and Tacoma Chapter Directors and Members for being part of the VAREP Family!

Sincerely,

Carla Lemon 13


Predator Lending has begun to reemerge in the Mortgage Industry once again. Being a HUD Housing Counselor, and hearing from homeowners facing foreclosure due to unavoidable situations after Crossing all T’s and Dotting all I’s. Predatory lending is a term typically used to describe unconscionable lending practices where a borrower is provided with an unfair loan. If there was unethical, deceptive, unfair, or fraudulent activity during your loan origination process, your lender may have engaged in predatory lending. Some common examples of predatory loans are negative amortization loans, adjustable rate mortgages, high interest mortgages, and balloon payment loans.

What Constitutes a Predatory Loan? Predatory lending encompasses several different types of abuses that loan originators may engage in. According to the OCC, the fundamental characteristic of predatory lending is “the aggressive marketing of credit to prospective borrowers who simply cannot afford the credit on the terms being offered.” The following are a few situations that may constitute predatory lending: • Packing of excess or hidden fees in the amount financed • Loan flipping (frequent refinancing that result in little or no economic benefit to the borrower but generate loan fees, prepayment penalties, and other fees for the lender) • Refinancing of special subsidized mortgages that results in the loss of loan terms beneficial to the borrower • Loan terms or structures (for example, negative amortization) that make it more difficult or impossible for the borrower to reduce or repay the indebtedness • Marketing inappropriate or excessively expensive products to borrowers who are older, are financially unsophisticated, or qualify for mainstream credit products and terms • Using balloon payments to conceal the true burden of financing and to force borrowers into costly refinancing transactions or foreclosures; and inadequate disclosure of true costs and risks. 14

There are also certain features associated with predatory loans, including: • Higher rates than the borrower qualifies for • Balloon payments in short-term transactions • An interest rate increase triggered when a borrower defaults on the loan • Prepayment penalties that are not limited to the early years of the loan • Financing points, fees, penalties, or other charges • Mandatory arbitration clauses. There is no bright line that a loan must cross to be considered predatory; an assessment must be made on a case by case basis.

What to Do if You know Someone That Has Become a Victim of Predatory Lending. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has funded housing counseling agencies throughout the country to provide free advice regarding foreclosure. If you think you may be a victim of predatory lending and are facing foreclosure, call toll-free (800) 569-4287 or visit the HUD website to find a housing counseling agency near you.


Our Housing Counseling Department is Here to Help You and Your Clients! USA Homeownership Foundation’s Housing Counseling Program is a no cost service open to Service Members and Veterans throughout the United States. Our HUD Housing Counseling Department is based out of VAREP’s Nation headquarters is in Corona but open to any Veteran, Service Member or Patriot living in the United States. Our Housing Counseling Program currently offers prepurchase, home buyer counseling, financial capability, credit and budget counseling, foreclosure prevention and post purchase counseling. If Veterans or Service Members need help accessing their VA Loan Benefits or Certificate of Eligibility, Thomas Griffin, our HUD Housing Counselor who is also a US Marine Veteran can assist them. We’ve successfully assisted over 500 clients this year alone with credit improvement, budgeting, homeownership and foreclosure prevention. Have a client whose credit needs work before buying a home, send them over to our Housing Counseling Department. Check out a few of our success stories on our website at:

GETTING HELP FOR YOUR CLIENTS IS AS EASY AS 1, 2, 3

1. Contact Contact our Housing Counseling Department by visiting our website at www.VetHomeOwnership.com and download the client intake forms.

2. Call Call our toll free number 888. 273.7267

3. Email Email your request to William Reninger, Housing Counseling Administrative Assistant, at wreninger@varep.net.

https://vethomeownership.com/index.php/successes/video-library 15


THE PATH TO SUSTAINABLE HOMEOWNERSHIP VAREP’s Housing Counseling Department is a HUD Approved Housing Counseling Agency providing home buying, credit, budget, post purchase and foreclosure prevention counseling services to Veterans, Active Military and the community nationwide. Over the past year, from January to December 2018, we provided the following housing counseling services:

2018 COUNSELING & OUTREACH STATISTICS

416

306 84 222

GROUP WORKSHOP PARTICIPANTS FROM VHS CHAPTER EVENTS

INQUIRIES FOR SERVICES

CLIENTS COUNSELED

1 ON 1 HOUSING COUNSELING CLIENTS

TYPES OF COUNSELING PROVIDED

124 27

PRE-PURCHASE HOMEOWNERSHIP

16

POST PURCHASE

29

FORECLOSURE PREVENTION

16

FINANCIAL HOMEOWNERSHIP SUSTAINABILITY COUNSELING

26

CREDIT COUNSELING

VISIT W W W.VE THOMEOW NERSHIP.COM OR CALL : 8 8 8. 27 3.72 6 7


5,500 LMI HOUSING INQUIRIES INTERNET, TELEPHONE & COMMUNITY EVENTS

1,500 LMI FAMILIES RECEIVED PRE-PURCHASE, CREDIT & HOUSING COUNSELING

850 VETERAN FAMILIES SUCCESSFULLY PLACED IN HOMES THROUGH OUR PROGRAMS

350 VETERANS WERE REFERRED TO HUD VASH PROGRAM

600 VETERANS ENGAGED IN CREDIT COUNSELING TO IMPROVE FINANCIAL READINESS

3,100 VETERANS & SERVICEMEMBERS

* Statistics from 2014-2018

EDUCATED ON VA HOME LOAN BENEFIT, IMPORTANCE OF GOOD CREDIT & HOME BUYING PROCESS THROUGH COUNSELING & OUTREACH EVENTS

VISIT W W W.VE THOMEOW NERSHIP.COM OR CALL : 8 8 8. 27 3.72 6 7

17


LEGISLATIVE CORNER “To maintain the momentum from the Policy Conference, I have appointed G-II Varrato, AZ State Director; Yeimalis Acevedo-Rasmussen, National Board of Director; William Process, Former Northern Nevada Chapter President; Gary Johnson, Former VAREP Sacramento Chapter President; Robbie Grossman, VAREP Twin Cities Vice-President; and Jeff Wilson, to form VAREP’s National Legislative Committee (NLC). The NLC’s task is to do the background and heavy-lifting work necessary to move our mission and the bill forward.” - Son Nguyen, VAREP Founder & President

G-II Varrato II U.S. Air Force Arizona State Director Legislative Committee Chairman

18

Yeimalis Acevedo-Rasmussen Patriot National Board of Director Legislative Committee

William Process U.S. Navy Legislative Committee

Gary Johnson

Robbie Grossman

Jeff Wilson

U.S. Air Force U.S. Coast Guard Legislative Committee

Patriot Legislative Committee

U.S. Navy Legislative Committee


VAREP’S NOTABLE FOOTPRINTS ON CAPITOL HILL The NLC Briefing is getting longer because VAREP is winning HUGE accomplishments on the HILL. So, what has the NLC been up to this past 4 months? Well… quite honestly, it’s not just the NLC but for certain, the entire GAD (Government Affairs Directors) from all of the chapters. A grand shout-out to all of the GADs. In California Orange County GAD, Dex Cajigal, has been burning up the track meeting+ legislators in their home offices, pushing the VAREP policy points, to include gunning for support by his legislators to help VAREP become a chartered VSO. GREAT work Dex! Robbie Grossman is another stand out GAD and NLC Co-Chair who has been working hard to get Representative Betty McCollum and Senators Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith to sign on to S.1986 - Fair Housing Improvement Act of 2019, introduced by Senator Tim Kaine this past June 26th 2019. BLUE WATER The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2019, H.R.299 was signed into law on 28 June 2019. While Blue Water’s main initiative is to solidify and codify health care for the Blue Water Vietnam Veteran Sailors, within that bill, now law, are elements that dramatically affect the VA Home Loan and VA Home Loan Benefits.

All aspects of Blue Water become effective and must be implemented no later than 1 January 2020.

First the VA Home Loan funding fee will increase, ever so slightly. The VA funding fee has not been increased since 2004 so it is way over due for an upward adjustment. The funding fees for regular servicemembers, active duty, separated and retired, will increase from 2.15% up to 2.40% for a first time user of his/her VA home loan benefits. For users of the VA loan benefit subsequent to his/her first use, the VA funding fee will increase from 3.25% up to 3.60%. These are very nominal increases. The following is an example how a $300,000 VA loan would be impacted. 4.5% @ 2.15% FF on a $300,000 amount financed

4.5% @ 3.25% FF on a $300,000 amount financed

$306,450 Total Loan Amount with Funding Fee included

$309,750 Total Loan Amount with Funding Fee included

$1552.74 PI

$1569.46 PI

4.5% @ NEW 2.4% FF on a $300,000 amount financed

4.5% @ NEW 3.60% FF on a $300,000 amount financed

$307,200 Total Loan Amount with Funding Fee included

$310,800 Total Loan Amount with Funding Fee included

$1556.54 PI

$1574.78 PI

A difference of $3.80 per month or approximately about 13 cents per day

A difference of $5.32 per month or approximately about 15 cents per day 19


LEGISLATIVE CORNER The 116th Congress revised the first version of H.R.299, introduced in the 115th Congress. VAREP had successfully eliminated the element of taking the funding fee waiver away from veterans with less than a 100% disability rating by the VA, thus leaving intact, the ability and important benefit that any veteran with any rated disability for which he/she receives compensation for that disability is entitled to a ‘funding fee waiver’ on any size VA home loan. In addition a new provision to the funding fee waiver was added to the new law. That is that any active duty servicemember who has received the Purple Heart, now will also be eligible to the ‘funding fee waiver’. The new law removes the VA home loan guarantee cap, thus allowing any veteran who can qualify for a jumbo loan to secure that financing without the need to make a down payment of 25% of the difference between the FNMA/FHLMC Conforming Loan Limit and the amount of the new VA home loan. Yep, that means that a veteran can finance any size VA home loan that he/she can qualify for, with NO DOWN PAYMENT. Finally, while we’re on Blue Water, changes to the Direct Housing Loans to Native American Veterans were also signed into law. The new law makes much needed improvements to the VA loan process for Native Americans who wish to use their VA home loan benefits to buy or build a home that is located on trust land. These changes to the Direct Housing Loans to Native American Veterans, made directly by the VA are long overdue. CHURNING S. 1749 & H.R.1988 Protecting Affordable Mortgages for Veterans Act of 2019 fixed what we refer to as the ‘Churning Provision’ of the ‘Public Law No: 115-174 (05/24/2018) Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act’, was critical to ensure protection from ‘churning’ remained effective and ensures that lenders will continue to offer the VA Loan product to eligible servicemembers, both active duty and separated. VAREP worked closely with Senator Kyrsten Sinema’s office, to author and ultimately pass the Senate and House, nearly unanimously, and S. 1749 became Public Law No 116-33 on 25 July 2019. Right on the heels of this legislation was S.504 - LEGION Act or the long title, Let Everyone Get Involved in Opportunities for National Service Act was signed into law 30 July 2019 and became Public Law No: 116-35. The law noted that since the end of World War II, the Federal Government has designated specific periods of war, the dates of which are important for qualification for certain benefits or membership in veterans organizations established by Congress. In between those recognized periods of war, during so-called peacetime eras, the United States military has been involved in not fewer than 12 known eras, which are unrecognized by the United States Government as periods of war, resulting in numerous United States personnel combat casualties. Even though those 12 unrecognized war eras occurred at the direction of the then President of the United States, with full knowledge and consent of the then Congress, veterans and their surviving spouses were not eligible to become part of the American Legion. This law changes that forever. Stop Drop & Push In support of Stop Drop and Push, the VAREP NLC is excited to introduce to the National Board the opportunity to work with Senator Sinema’s office again, this time on S.1467 - Sergeant Daniel Somers Network of Support Act. The bill seeks to require a pilot program on information sharing between the Department of Defense and designated relatives and friends of members of the Armed Forces regarding the experiences and challenges of military service, particularly during and after overseas deployments, and for other purposes.

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Additionally, and also in support of Stop Drop and Push, the VAREP NLC is also proposing, to the National Board, that VAREP also work with Senator’s Tillis and Sinema on S.785 - Commander John Scott Hannon Veterans Mental Health Care Improvement Act of 2019. This bill proposes to improve mental health care provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs, and for other purposes. This is a massive and sweeping piece of legislation that has by bipartisan support, an oddity in Washington DC these days. Informed Consumer Choice Disclosure With the advent of the new URLA, which will be required to be used as of 1 February 2020, it is ever more critical that efforts to introduce necessary legislation that will improve the Informed Consumer Choices Disclosure statute be passed into law. Of course we all know of the upgrade to the URLA to include now, a veteran specific question on the first page of the URLA, “…Military Service - Did you (or your deceased spouse) ever serve, or are you currently serving, in the United States Armed Forces?…” This is the first time, in the ¾ of a century old VA loan product, that this question has ever been a required part of the residential mortgage loan application process. VAREP’s NLC provided Senator Kyrsten Sinema with VAREPs suggested updating language for U.S. Code › Title 12 › Chapter 13 › Subchapter II › § 1709 12 U.S. Code § 1709. Senator Sinema’s staff, in conjunction with the Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs are working diligently to either introduce the language as a ‘stand alone bill’ or find a bill where the revisions to Consumer Choices Disclosure language can be inserted. We will have this done by the end of 2019. You can take that to the bank! Finally, HMDA (Home Mortgage Disclosure Act) Currently, the CFPB (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau) does not consider veterans as a geographic target under the “Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HDMA) and Regulation C”; thus, they do not collect data/monitor the veteran lending experience. This means they cannot provide an identification mechanism for any predatory lending practices and to provide reporting statistics on the mortgage market to paint a clearer picture of the veteran lending and homeownership experience. CFPB opened HMDA for comment on 2 May 2019. The comment period closed on 2 July 2019. Late in June 2019, CFPB extended the comment period so that it will now close on 15 October 2019. VAREP will be advancing a comment to be entered into the records prior to 15 October 2019. The new URLA (FNMA Form 1003) marks the first time that specific information will be collected at the inception of the loan process. VAREP has asked Congress to endorse VAREPs suggestion to CFPB to include specific detailed data-points specific to the VA application and lending process. VAREP will specifically suggest and encourage CFPB to expand the definition of data collection for VA loans. VAREP is convinced that, currently FFIEC (Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council) does not prescribe adequate guidance on how to collect and report financial data regarding the VA Loan process. FIG (the Filing Instruction Guide) makes only one reference to VA-guaranteed loans. All other references to the data collection is lumped under the general term Ginnie Mae, which of course conflates both the VA and FHA loan into one single data-set. VAREP believes that both the VA and FHA data sets must have their own data collection algorithms. VAREP continues to lead the way in home ownership advocacy, community outreach, veteran job creation and affordable housing for our military family through the professional membership of all industry professionals who have made a commitment to our military family. G-II Varrato II is the VAREP Arizona State Director, VAREP National Legislative Committee Chair and a Diversity Committee Member at NAR. 21


IN Memoriam

LISA WALKER NOVEMBER 26, 1957 - JULY 31, 2019 The Greater Annapolis Chapter of Maryland recently lost a cherished member of the board, Chief Lisa Walker, U.S. Coast Guard, Retired. Lisa Walker entered the U.S. Coast Guard from her hometown of Springfield Massachusetts in July 1976. She completed a 13-week basic training in Wildwood NJ, and then attended Radioman A School in Petaluma CA. She has seen tours of duty in Oregon, Guam, D.C, Hawaii, Maryland and a short tour aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Munro home ported out of Portland Oregon. Chief Walker retired from the Coast Guard in 1998 while stationed at the Office of Naval Intelligence in Suitland Maryland. Since June 07, 2009, Lisa has been the Program Director at the Annapolis Vet Center, Department of Veterans Affairs. Prior to that she worked for Department of Defense at the Navy Fleet and Family Support Center for eight years as an Information and Referral Specialist.

CARLOS PACHECO OCTOBER 24, 1947 - JULY 15, 2019 Carlos was a Marine Corps veteran who served proudly in the Vietnam War and was a Lifetime Member of VFW Post 76. He was a REALTORÂŽ and joined VAREP in 2016 where he was a very active volunteer member. He served as Membership Director during 2017 and 2018 until he resigned due to health issues. Carlos never met a stranger and was willing to help at all times wherever he was needed. He doted on his only child, an adult daughter, and was able to proudly walk her down the aisle just the month before he died. He will be sorely missed by his many friends in the VAREP San Antonio Chapter. 22


WILL KILLENS NOVEMBER 27, 1956 - AUGUST 3, 2019 VAREP Orange County’s Educational Director Will Killens transitioned from his life on earth to his heavenly home after his 13+ year battle with cancer. He will be truly missed as one of our very active and truly passionate Veterans on our board. He was always willing to jump in and do what ever was needed to be done in order to accomplish the mission. His motto was “When there’s a Will, there’s a Way!!!” and it was true! Will had a sneaky-funny sense of humor and we truly enjoyed our camaraderie and the bantering back and forth between his beloved Army and our fellow board members who are Marines and Navy Veterans. His quick wit and talent to slide a wisecrack into the conversation was one reasons our chapter enjoyed so much laughter and joy when he was present! He was exceptional man, soldier, coach, veteran, brother and friend! Will was a true gentleman to his core and man of God. We will truly miss his intelligence, wit and charismatic charm! He will always hold a special place in our hearts and we will continue the mission in his honor!

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E! T A D E H T E V A S

JUNE 14-16, 2020 · WASHINGTON D.C.

The conference is filled with educational sessions and town halls to educate attendees on important housing policy, lending initiatives, and economic development affecting the military and veteran communities.

GRAND HYATT WASHINGTON 1000 H St NW, Washington, DC 20001

SEE YOU IN WASHINGTON D.C.! 24

varep.n e t /p o lic yc onferen c e


FACES IN THE CROWD “Faces in the Crowd” is a handful of responses to an intriguing question... VAREP Members share their stories of all things VAREP related!

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WHAT IS UNIQUE ABOUT VAREP? VAREP - River Valley, AR Chapter VAREP’s mission to assist veterans and active duty military members in homeownership is one of a kind. It educated professionals specifically in the real estate world about va loans and ways to help those who have given us so much.

VAREP - Broward, FL Chapter VAREP focuses on a local level to provide Services and one on one relationships to our Military & Real Estate community.

VAREP - Tucson, AZ Chapter VAREP helps veterans understand how to prepare themselves for buying a home and using their VA benefits. They aslo help out Veterans that have fallen into hardships.

VAREP - San Bernardino, CA Chapter VAREP is an organization that actually cares about people, not just about Veterans but also about the people within the organization.

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VAREP - San Antonio, TX Chapter VAREP’s consistent approach of support for military and veteran communities through its advocacy for fair treatment and education to include more than just benefits available, but also how to get and remain financially fit.

VAREP - Chicago, IL Chapter It is the only Veteran focused non profit in the real estate industry that is fueled largely by Veteran board members, but also by those that support Veterans home ownership.

VAREP - Atlanta,GA Chapter I am new to VAREP and still learning. I like that the organization brings both Veterans and Patriots together working side by side to educate professionals in the real estate industry.

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WHY DO YOU GIVE YOUR MONEY, TIME, OR ENERGY TO VAREP AND IT’S MISSION? VAREP - Louisville, KY Chapter As a patriot, I am compelled to give back to our veterans in honor of the many sacrifices they endured to support our nation. Given appropriate education, time, and resources we can reduce veteran homelessness and make a difference in our local communities one veteran at a time.

VAREP - Honolulu, HI Chapter I am Veteran and earned the right to use my benefits to purchase a home and want to see more veterans get into homes using this benefit and to eliminate the myths of the va home loan in the real estate industry.

VAREP - Orange County, CA Chapter I come from a long line of military members within my family. The military made me who i am and anything i can do to give back to my brothers and sisters, i am willing to do.

VAREP - Chicago, IL Chapter I give because I believe that the veteran and military communities are very undeserved in general, but also specifically where housing is concerned. I do not see any other organizations giving the time and energy to helping eliminate homelessness among the veteran population.

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VAREP - Eastbay, CA Chapter Helping my brothers and sisters in arms, brings me a sense of purpose in my career choice, and to be a part of something bigger than me.

VAREP - Central Florida Chapter We are an elite group of like minded professionals who truly believe in helping our Veterans achieve home ownership.

VAREP - Fresno, CA Chapter I feel strongly for the Veteran and active duty community. Being a Veteran myself I understand the large gap in education within the military and civilian world for our Veterans. I feel it is my obligation to help inform knowing the information that I do.

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WHAT WOULD GO UNDONE IF VAREP CLOSED TOMORROW? VAREP - Houston, TX Chapter Vets would go without Help with there housing issues, and education about there other benefits.

VAREP - Tri-State Director There would be a lot of realtors and lenders not aware of the totality of the benefits of the VA Loan or people to convey this to those who earned the right to use it.

VAREP - Orange County, CA Chapter There would be no organization focusing on HomeOwnership sustainability. Most other organizations seem more interested in what the Vets/Active Duty can do for them and their companies and their personal success.

VAREP - Washington D.C. Chapter Many of our veterans would potentially fail to fully understand their earned benefit, and in many cases never utilize or receive the protection and security of the VA home loan.

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VAREP - Miami, FL Chapter Our veterans need us as their voice and to help our colleagues within the industry to better understand how to work with, and assist our veterans obtain affordable housing utilizing the benefits they have earned.

VAREP - Central vFlorida Chapter The Veterans Voice would not be heard on Capitol Hill. Realtors would continue to be uneducated on the benefits of a VA loan as well as many veterans!

VAREP - Chicago, IL Chapter I think education would be the biggest loss if VAREP closed tomorrow. The tools & training the board members are given are crucial to getting information to both the veteran consumers and the real estate professionals. The biggest thing we hear every lunch & learn is “how come I never heard this before?” And without VAREP, I think we’d see a huge hole in our industry.

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“The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive veterans of early wars were treated and appreciated by our nation.” - George Washington

VETERANS ASSOCIATION OF REAL ESTATE PROFESSIONALS info@VAREP.net

w w w . V A R E P. n e t

951- 444 -7363

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Roger That Newsletter - August 2019  

RT - Roger That is our quarterly VAREP Newsletter. This is our best way for VAREP National to communicate happening within our organization...

Roger That Newsletter - August 2019  

RT - Roger That is our quarterly VAREP Newsletter. This is our best way for VAREP National to communicate happening within our organization...

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