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February 2014 Inside this Issue: President’s Message


February Month-at-aGlance


Affiliate Appreciation Night


Affiliates Corner


YPN “Appy Hour”


Awards Information


Membership News


President’s Message We passed winter’s halfway point and spring is just around the corner. Days are getting longer and February school vacation is only two weeks away. By St. Patrick’s day most years the snow is melted, and things start to turn from brown to green again. It can’t come soon enough! Thanks to everyone who made it to our first YPN event last week. We had record turnout and incredible reviews from everyone who made it. Details on the next event will be announced soon. Things are hopping at the Board office. There are many events and some critical dates coming up.

Professional Development 14-15 CREST


Government Affairs


MAR News


Scholarship Drive Raffle


AWARDS: For the first time ever, we’ll recognize our top producing agents at this year’s Awards ceremony. Please look at the awards criteria on our website or pages 10-13 of this newsletter. You’ll need to submit your 2013 sales to be considered for this award. Detailed instructions are included. The deadline for submission is February 17, and the awards ceremony will be held on April 17th. Get those numbers in! DESIGNATED REALTORS and Office Managers: We hope you’ll make it to our first DR breakfast of 2014 on February 3rd on Agency. This class will be taught by Jody O’Brien and is sponsored by Emery Credit Union.

WRAR Mission Statement The purpose of the Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® is to: * Provide members with the resources that enable them to serve the public in an ethical and professional manner * Take an active role regarding issues affecting sellers, buyers, tenants and landlords.

Want to Build Your Business? If you answered “Yes”, Our first class in the Business Builders series will be held on 2/13. Learn to develop a successful business plan to achieve your goals in 2014! Lunch and Learn returns on 2/25. Bill Murphy will be teaching his popular Finance course and will be providing lunch to attendees. Please join us on 2/27 for Affiliate appreciation night and support our dedicated business partners who help us with all our events throughout the year. Finally, our Annual Day on the Hill will be held on June 11th this year. It’s our biggest Government Affairs event of the year, and we’re hoping for a record turnout. If you haven’t been to the statehouse, (or haven’t been back since your 5th grade class trip) this is your chance. We’ll meet with our legislators, have a great lunch, and you’ll even have time for a tour. Please add it to your calendar now!


Dave Stead 2014 WRAR President Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® 1

WRAR MONTH-AT-A-GLANCE February 2014 Sunday






Saturday 1 9-5 RE Prelicense Class


3 8:30 DR Breakfast 11 Golf Comm Mtg.

4 9 Gov’t Affairs Comm Mtg 9:30-3:00 MLS PIN Training

5 8:30 New Member Orientation



8 9-5 RE Prelicense Class



11 8-2 CEU Classes 9:30 Community Action Comm.

12 9 Finance Comm 10:30 BOD Mtg

13 2-4 Business Builder’s Series

14 Valentine’s Day



17 Presidents Day


19 9:30-3:30 MLS PIN Training






25 10:30 Lunch & Learn with Fairway Mortgage


27 4:00-6:30 Affiliate Appreciation Night

28 8-2 CEU Classes

WRAR Closed

Save the Date Thursday, April 17, 2014 11:30 - 2:30

WRAR Awards Celebration Wachusett Country Club, West Boylston

Wednesday, June 11, 2014 REALTOR® Day on the Hill TBA State House, Boston Thursday, June 26, 2014 9:00 am

WRAR Annual Golf Tournament Wachusett Country Club, West Boylston

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® 2

Affiliate Appreciation Night We invite you to join us for a Networking Reception to honor our valued Affiliated Business Partners. WRAR Membership dues have not increased in SEVEN years! Did you know that Affiliate support is one of the reasons for this?

Date: Time: Place: Cost:

Thursday, February 27, 2014 4:00-6:30 pm WRAR 492 Washington Street, Auburn FREE to all Affiliate and REALTOR® members of WRAR $10 optional donation to the WRAR Scholarship Fund includes arm’s length of tickets for gift basket raffle

Wine & Beer Tasting Appetizers Trivia with Dave Stead & Dave Samara

YOU MUST PRE-REGISTER FOR THIS EVENT! Credit card payments can be made online at Fax this form to 508-832-6620 or email to Name:________________________________________________________________________________________ Company:_____________________________________________________________________________________ email:________________________________________________________________________________________ Here’s my donation to the scholarship fund! $_______

Check enclosed_____

Credit Card_____

Credit CardRegional No.______________________________________________________ Expiration_________________ Worcester Association of REALTORS® 3


Good lenders make good neighbors. Our NextDoor Mortgage Consultants are local people. They know our area, they know their stuff and they know how to get you the perfect loan. Good lenders make good neighbors. Meet a few of our NextDoor Lending officers: From left to right:

Mike Checkosky

Emily DeGray

Paul Nocivelli

NMLS# 719009

NMLS# 719017

NMLS# 47819

Southbridge branch

Charlton branch

Worcester branch

Call us at 1-800-939-9103


Drop on by. Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS速 4


You could be unknowingly and unnecessarily losing TENS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS every year in these areas: • Current retirement plan • College savings • Household expenses Compass Consulting Group educates you on how to recover your money. Contact us today to learn about our tax efficient savings strategies where you can immediately start using the money we find. If we look at your situation and find $10,000 to $20,000 that you were losing each year, could you use that money?

m! Thomas M. Valentine Jr. President/Financial Advisor o T t c 645 Chandler Street • Worcester, MA 01602 •508-796-5950 Conta

Special offer for the members of:

Email: • Web: *Registered Representative, Securities offered through Cambridge Investment Research, Inc. A Broker/Dealer, Member FINRA/SIPC. Compass Consulting Group and Cambridge are not affiliated.

Lease Space Available There is a current vacancy in our WRAR Headquarter building on 492 Washington St., Auburn. First floor location with Route 20 street exposure in one of the newest office buildings south of Worcester. This A1 office space will give your business the exposure and proper presence that it deserves. Common area restrooms and an ADA compliant space. MLS Pin List # 71555847. For further information on the space and bonus, please contact our listing agent, Randy DeVries (508) 320-1145

SPECIAL THROUGH MARCH ONLY: WRAR is offering a $2000 bonus to any licensee who successfully brings a qualified tenant that results in an executed lease.

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® 5

AFFILIATE’S CORNER Congress Lets The Mortgage Debt Relief Act Expire By John Saari, aka, “The Mortgage Buddy,” Emery Federal Credit Union

For many, this year’s tax season could dampen the prospects of that fresh start and those financial resolutions to save more and spend less. As of December 31st 2013 the Mortgage Debt Relief Act and Debt Cancellation of 2007 has expired. The Federal Debt Relief act was put into place to “allow taxpayers to exclude income from the discharge of debt on their principle residence.” This debt relief created a bit of a softer landing from the financial burden of equity and job loss as a result of the Great Recession. With America’s economy improving and home values coming back this session’s Congress didn’t take the necessary steps to renew the Mortgage Debt Relief Act for 2014. debt

How does The Federal Debt Relief Act Work? Homeowners who own more money on their mortgage than their home is appraised for have the option to negotiate a sales price with their lender through short-sale. A short-sale is when a bank allows the homeowner to sell the property for less than is owed on the mortgage. This difference between what the bank approved sales price through the short sale is and what is owed on the mortgage would be considered income for the homeowner and therefore subject to tax based on the individual’s specific tax bracket.

Short Sale Example: Johnny Homeowner owes $200,000 on his mortgage with Acme Mortgage Co., but his home is only appraised at $150,000. Acme Mortgage Co. grants Mr. Homeowner a short sale at $150,000. Johnny Homeowner will be required to pay taxes on that $50,000 difference based on his taxable earnings bracket. Under the Federal Debt Relief Act, Mr. Homeowner would not have to pay taxes on that $50,000. Now with the expiration of the Act, Johnny is back on the hook and will have some potentially large tax liabilities for his next filing year. It’s true that the housing market is on the rebound and homeowners are recovering much of their equity lost from the credit crisis, but just because we are out of the woods doesn’t mean people are not still struggling. The unemployment rate maybe dropping but the job rate participation is at the lowest point since 1978. According to the Bureau of

Labor Statistics there are 91.8 million eligible Americans not currently participating in the work force.

Mortgage Buddy Opinion-

We need to jump start the economy without flooding it with more fed liquidity and that comes through more the natural expansion of GDP. Americans can’t buy goods if they are paying large tax bills, and if they aren’t spending the private sector can’t expand and create more jobs. There is difference between a government handout and a supportive government. It’s true that many Americans bought homes they couldn’t afford and may have maxed out the tangible equity, but there are millions who lost their jobs from no fault of their own and technology makes our life easier and businesses more efficient but it’s that efficiency that keeps companies from needing to hire. The Mortgage Debt Relief Act still makes sense for primary residences and hopefully Congress will work together to make this program available.

John Saari of Emery Federal Credit Union is a Platiinum Level VIP Sponsor for 2014. We welcome him to WRAR and thank him for the support! The Mass Mortgage Buddy was designed to create an education based home buying and refinancing experience for Massachusetts’ residents. If you are interested in refinancing or have a client interested in buying a home, visit

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® 6

MEMBERSHIP NEWS - YOUNG PROFESSIONALS’ NETWORK YPN “Appy Hour” The kickoff event on January 23rd for the Young Professionals' Network was a great success, with over 75 in attendance! Speakers Kathleen Cooper, Joe Schutt and Chris Whitten highlighted some great apps for REALTORS®. Thank you to YPN Chair Kathleen Cooper and YPN Committee Members Kristen Auclair (Liberty Mutual), Kelly Gaumond (Country Bank), Bryan Larson (Fairway Mortgage) Tracy Barber, Nancy Shaw-Morley and Shannon Curll for planning and executing the event. Special thanks to event sponsors Bryan Larson of Fairway Mortgage

Boston and the Law Office of Jessica L. Albino!

Hope to see you all at the next event in March!

A full house was on hand for the presentation, which was followed by appetizers and beer & wine tastings.

Pictured right: WRAR EVP Colleen Pappas, WRAR President Dave Stead, and YPN Committee Chair Kathleen Cooper

Left: Speakers Kathleen Cooper, Joe Schutt and Chris Whitten review the real estate apps.

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® 7


Watch for the next YPN event in March!

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® 8

MEMBERSHIP NEWS - Nominating Committee

Awards Process & Deadlines:

February 10: February 17: March 10: March 17:

Deadline for all nominations Task Force meets to review nominations to determine eligibility. Qualification Form sent to those nominees meeting eligibility. Deadline for Awards Qualification Forms to be submitted Task Force meets to review completed Qualification Forms. Winner in each category selected. Winners announced at Annual Awards ceremony. General Requirements: Cannot be part of the Selection Committee or be a past recipient. Service is based on actual performance from January 2013 through ® December 2013. Must be a member in good standing of The Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS .

REALTOR® OF THE YEAR AWARD ® Recognizes a REALTOR for dedicated service to the Association, the community and the real estate industry. Requirements:  Local, state or national association activities  Community Service  Business Accomplishments ®  REALTOR Spirit The successful candidate will represent the Worcester Regional ® ® Association of REALTORS at the MAR REALTOR of the Year and Professional Awards Banquet. NATALIE QUINLAN DISTINGUISHED SERVICE AWARD Recognizes individuals for continuous service to the Association over an extended period of time. Requirements:  Minimum five years activity ®  Full-time REALTOR  High degree of real estate knowledge  Public service  Service to the Association in more than one area (may or may not have served in a leadership capacity). THE REALTORS® CHOICE AWARD ® Recognizes a WRAR REALTOR member for outstanding ethics and professionalism; for courtesy and cooperation in the listing and selling of real estate. Service on an Association committee is not required.

AFFILIATE OF THE YEAR AWARD Recognizes an outstanding Affiliate Business Partner of WRAR who has made the greatest contribution to the Association and the community at large. Requirements:  Candidates must have held Affiliate membership with our Association for at least two years.  Participation on an Association committee and events.  Community service and other business affiliations. ROOKIE OF THE YEAR AWARD ® Recognizes a REALTOR member who is new to the business and ® who embodies the REALTOR culture by focusing on professional development and professional growth. Requirements:  Must be nominated by your broker ®  Must be a full-time REALTOR licensed for 24 months or less  Number of hours in attendance at any education program given by the Association  Number of designation or industry related college courses  Community involvement  Production- number of transactions  Participation on Association committee and events recommended


Deadline for submission: Monday, February 10, 2014 REALTOR® of the Year

Distinguished Service


Affiliate of the Year

REQUIRED: Submitted by


Rookie of the Year

Fax to 508-832-6620 or mail to: Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®, 492 Washington Street, Auburn, MA 01501

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® 9

MEMBERSHIP NEWS - Top Producer Award The Worcester Regional Association of Realtors® is proud to announce the inaugural year of our TOP PRODUCERS Award! WRAR seeks to recognize REALTORS® for their accomplishment of outstanding levels of production in real estate transactions during the calendar year. This award may be given to Individual Realtors® and Teams. Approximately 5% of WRAR members will be eligible for this award. All applications must be received by WRAR no later than February 17, 2014. Entries may be mailed, faxed or emailed to ELIGIBILITY To qualify for consideration, the applicant must have been a primary member in good standing with WRAR during the past calendar year, and must have paid their 2014 WRAR dues in full by December 31, 2013. Members enrolled in the budget plan must be paid in full by February 28th. CRITERIA FOR ELIGIBILITY OF TRANSACTION 1. Sold properties through MLSPIN or other MLS may be counted. The listing side of an Entry Only sale shall NOT be counted, but the sale side may be counted. 2. All entries not substantiated by MLSPIN will require documentation. 3. No credit will be given for outgoing referrals, leases or finder’s fees. 4. Applicant takes credit for the full sales price and 1 unit if either the listing or selling agent. If applicant is both listing and selling agent on the same transaction, he/she may count the full sale price twice and 1 unit for each side. 5. All entries are subject to verification by the Top Producers Committee. The Committee reserves the right to reject applications based on fraudulent information. 6. The Top Producers Awards Committee has the right to and may request additional documentation in order to verify an agent’s sales. MINIMUM ENTRY REQUIREMENTS – An individual agent must have sold a minimum of either: - $4 million volume plus a minimum of 16 units OR - 22 units with no minimum volume OR - $8 million with no minimum units The requirements for a Team are based on the number of people on that team, with each person on the team requiring an additional 50% of the individual production levels. For example: Team of 2 - $6 million plus 24 units OR 33 units with no minimum volume OR $12 million Team of 3 - $8 million plus 32 units OR 44 units with no minimum volume OR $16 million Team of 4 - $10 million plus 40 units OR 55 units with no minimum volume OR $20 million, etc. * * A Team is defined as a group of agents who work together and all transactions are reported in MLS under one Team ID. AWARD LEVELS – Awards will be given on three levels of production: Ruby, Emerald and Diamond

Awards will be presented at the WRAR Awards event on April 17, 2014. Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®


MEMBERSHIP NEWS - Top Producer Award DOCUMENTATION TO ACCOMPANY YOUR APPLICATION: MLSPIN report (see screen shot below) In H3, select: TOOLS In Tools, click on Market Reports In Market Reports, click on New Report At the top left of the screen, under Report Type, choose Market Share – My Market Share Under Property Type, select ALL categories Set the button to YES for Display Search Criteria Under Time Frame, scroll down and click “Choose a Time Frame”. Set Start Date to 1/1/2013, End Date to 12/31/2013 Click Search Now. A message will pop up telling you “You have selected NO TOWNS… Do you wish to continue? Click OK. Print the summary page from MLS showing your transactions and sides.

Non-MLS Sales If you have a Non-MLS listing that you would like considered for this award, you must attach a copy of the HUD statement identifying your company as an agent of the transaction as well as a signed statement from your Broker showing the amount of gross commission paid to your office and verifying you were the agent for the transaction.

Awards will be presented at the WRAR Awards event on April 17, 2014. Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®


MEMBERSHIP NEWS - Top Producer Award 2014 TOP PRODUCERS APPLICATION FORM Name: ______________________________________________ MLS ID: ________________________ Office: ______________________________________________________________________________ Email: ________________________________________ Individual ____________ Team ____________ Other Team Members: __________________________________________________________________ Total MLS Dollar Volume $__________________________

Total MLS Sides ____________________

Non-MLS Dollar Volume


Non-MLS Sides ____________________

Total Dollar Volume


Total Sides


Multiply $_____________________________ X ________________ = $ ___________________________ Dollar Volume Total Total Sides This form must be accompanied by your MLSPIN Market Share report and any Non-MLS documentation to be considered. Applications without the proper documentation may be returned or rejected.

I hereby certify that all transactions submitted are truly my own, and not the sales or listings of other agents or assistants. I understand that falsifying my application will disqualify me from this award, may prohibit me from applying in the future, and may result in a hearing to assess a violation of the Realtor 速Code of Ethics.



Broker/Manager Signature: _______________________________________________________________

All applications must be received by WRAR no later than February 17, 2014. Entries may be mailed, faxed or emailed to

Awards will be presented at the WRAR Awards event on April 17, 2014. Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS速



Member Alert!

Yvonne Amagliani RE/MAX Professional Associates Sturbridge Gillian Bonazoli Coldwell Banker Res. Brok. Worcester Lisa Carpenter Community Realty Worcester Paul D’Anello Coldwell Banker Res. Brok. Shrewsbury Monica Delaporta Coldwell Banker Res. Brok. Shrewsbury Jackie Dowd ERA Key Realty Services Westboro Matthew Ezzo RE/MAX Professional Assoc. Sturbridge Terese Garney ERA Key Realty Services Worcester Kim Hines RE/MAX Advantage1 Worcester Lorene Johnson-Chausse Hope Reall Estate Group Webster Jaime Mackoul Coldwell Banker Res.Brok Worcester Melanie Perez Hope Realty & Associates Worcester Deborah Perro Deborah Perro Shrewsbury Angela Petralia Century 21 Realty Team Leominster Yolanda Walker DCU Realty Marlboro

Agents Transferred to New Office: Nextage M3 Realty Exit Realty Partners ERA Key Realty Services RE/MAX Acclaim Re/Max Professional Assoc. Pierce Property Consultants ERA Key Realty Services ERA Key Realty Services Re/Max Professional Assoc. Keller Williams Realty Pierce Property Consultants

Worcester Worcester Worcester Oxford Shrewsbury Shrewsbury Worcester Worcester Shrewsbury Worcester Shrewsbury

Michael L. Durkin, ALC, CBR Realtor 269 W. Main Street, Suite: 4A Remax Prestige

New REALTOR® Office Bucky Rogers

Norboro Realty Service LLC 24 Main Street


New Affiliates

CJ Bowker

Aclaro Risk Management 15 Main Street


Patrick Flynn

Flynn Law Office 351 Main Street


Raquel Thomas

Cornerstone Title Services 179 Shrewsbury Street

All agents , My yahoo email continues to be monitored by an unknown 3rd party . This 3rd party intercepts all emails that use the words “offer” “deposit” “money “ etc. Despite having 3 law enforcement agency’s informed of this {Secret Service , FBI, and local law enforcement}there are no strong counter measure available . Because the monetary threshold is so low , not exceeding 250,000 dollars , The federal agency’s, despite having account numbers and bank locations, have little or no interest in pursuing this. I have used my own forensic computer services company . Machado Consulting out of Worcester, Mass to track this . We are in the process of “cleaning each and every computer used by me in the conduct of my business, in order to discover the intrusion and put an end to this . It is a long, costly trip, but one which is necessitated by my use of that email for over 15 years to conduct my business . I will share this with all of you A broker from a BIG agency did not see the notice sent out by the Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® and sent the money to a bank in Texas for a deposit on a condominium here in Northboro, Mass . I can only do so much, but I would ask that each of you, verify your email communication with whoever ,or get back to basics by using the phone. People to People still works best in this business . I can be reached at 508-612-2638 or my Assistant Nikki at 774-249-2381 . Thank you all for your patience and understanding. Warm regards, Michael


OUR 2014 VIP SPONSORS Representing Buyers, Sellers & Mortgage Lenders

Marie Beauregard Sara Fish Albert George Kimberley Germain Julius Hernandez Patrick Kennedy Michele Miller Ken Miller Lou Sparanges John Vaillancourt Seth Welcom

We received the following alert from Michael Durkin. PLEASE BE AWARE AND BE CAREFUL!

Does your Closing Attorney guarantee satisfaction? We do! The Real Estate Law Office of

David R. Rocheford, Jr., P.C. Save time and money on your next real estate closing. Call us for the best closings, GUARANTEED! 978-728-5104

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®


PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT The WRAR Professional Development Committee is pleased to present:

2014 Office Leadership Breakfast Series Offered exclusively to Brokers & Office Managers



Presented by

Session 1 Topic:


Jody O’Brien

Jody was the 2003 President of the Northeast Association of REALTORS® and a member of the Board of Directors for the Mass. Association of REALTORS® from 1998 – 2004. Her service awards include Chairperson of the Year Award (twice), 1999 Distinguished Service Award and 2003 Massachusetts Educator of the Year.

Date: February 3, 2014 Breakfast: 8:30 am Program: 9:00-11:00 am Receive 2 CEU’s (RE57R07)

Future Dates: May 5 September 8 November 3 You will be entered into a raffle EACH TIME you attend a session. On November 3, one lucky DR/OM, will receive a PIZZA PARTY for their office! This series is sponsored by our PLATINUM LEVEL VIP SPONSORS:


............................................................................. Register now - $15 each or all 4 for $50 Fax to 508-832-6620 or email to Feb. 3_____($15)

May 5_____($15)

Sept. 8_____($15)

Nov. 3_____($15)

ALL 4_____($50)

Name:_________________________________________________________________________________________ Firm:_________________________________________________________________________________________ Billing Address:_________________________________________________________________________________ Credit Card/Expiration:___________________________________________________________________________ email:_______________________________________________ phone:____________________________________

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®


A monthly educational series brought to you by the WRAR Professional Development Committee

Business Builders

PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT Business Builder Session 1:

Developing a Powerful Business Plan Date: Time: Place:

Thursday, February 13 2:00-4:00 pm WRAR 492 Washington Street, Auburn Price: FREE to WRAR Members Speaker: Greg DeCristofaro

Back by Popular Demand! National Coach, Greg DeCristofaro


WIN A TABLET! Each time you attend a Business Builder class, your name will be entered into a drawing. At the end of the year, one lucky winner will receive a TABLET!

This event is sponsored by: Emery Federal Credit Union John B. Saari Senior Loan Officer NMLS #5529 Office: 781-759-1200 Cell: 508-740-7442

.......................................................... Sign me up ! Return this form via fax to 508-832-6620 or email to You may also enroll online at Name ___________________________________________________________________________________ Address__________________________________________________________________________________ City/State/Zip_____________________________________________________________________________ Phone______________________________________ email_______________________________________

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS速


CENTER FOR REAL ESTATE STUDIES & TRAINING Upcoming CEU Courses for February All classes are held at the Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® CREST School, 492 Washington Street, Auburn, MA 01501.. We also hold periodic classes at the Fidelity Bank Building, 478 Mechanic Street in Leominster. WRAR Members in good standing receive FREE LOCAL CEU’s! Tuition for non-members is $30 for each 2-hour CEU. You may register for classes online at or by calling the WRAR office at 508-832-6600.

Auburn, Tuesday, February 11, 2014 Time


8:00 - 10:00

Bob Falter

Course Code RE01R06

Course Title

10:00 - 12:00

Bob Falter


Residential Rental-Landlord/Tentant Issues

12:00 - 2:00

Bob Falter


Commonly Used Forms: Mandatory

Seller Agency

Auburn, Friday, February 28 , 2014 8:00 - 10:00

Gene Check


Americans with Disability Act (ADA)

10:00 - 12:00

Jamie Williamson


Chapter 93A, Consumer Protection & Business Regulations

12:00 - 2:00

Jamie Williamson


Fair Housing

O’CONNELL & O’CONNELL , P.C. ATTORNEYS AT LAW Next CEU Classes: March 11, 9:00-11:00 am in Leominster and March 8 & 28, 2014, 8:00 am - 2:00 , PHILIP D. O CONNELL, JR. pm in Auburn. For a complete schedule, visit


CEU Changes for 2014 Effective January 2014, our 12-hour days of CEU’s will now switch to two 6-hour days, We find that shorter days are more conducive to learning. CEU classes will remain FREE for all WRAR Members. Non members - New for 2014 - Get your 12 education credits for license renewal for only $99.00! Pay all at once and have the luxury of attending the classes you want; at your pace.

425 PAKACHOAG STREET AUBURN, MA 01501 TELEPHONE (508) 832-5872 FAX (508) 832-7167




TELEPHONE (508) 832-5872 FAX (508) 832-7167

As always, you may continue to take online courses at the MAR Online Education Center. Contact Lynne Walls at to schedule your classes. View the complete calendar at Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®



Earn 2 CE’s- Financing (RE25R08)

The Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS® 492 Washington St. Auburn, MA 01501 February 25th 11a-1p (Registration at 10:30am) Lunch and refreshments will be served courtesy of Attorney Jessica Albino Please remember parking is limited, try to carpool.

To Pre-Register call Lynne Walls at 508-832-6600 Or visit: What to expect:  How to get buyers & sellers off the fence  Qualified Mortgage & the ability to repay and what it means for your client’s financing  Rates and how they affect your buyer’s financing options  Submitting strong offers with strong preapprovals  Over 50 Mortgage & Credit Gotcha Secrets  The new generation of homebuyers  Gaining market share with first‐time homebuyers & move‐up sellers  Setting and achieving your 2014 goals  Key success principles from top producers Hosts: Bill Murphy of Fairway Independent Mortgage Center for Real Estate Studies & Training

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®


COMMITTEE ON GOVERNMENT & LEGISLATIVE AFFAIRS Scrap Metal Bill Update Day on the Hill Thank you REALTORS® with the scrap metal bill.

for your support Here is the latest update with the success of this bill passing :

The scrap metal bill, which seeks to halt and reverse theft of metal piping in vacant homes, was passed by the Senate before winter recess. Per Bay State REALTOR® magazine this is in large part due to REALTOR® lobbying efforts , MAR testifying before the Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure , as well as the Association-wide call to action. WE DO make a difference! The next step is for the bill to be passed by the House before its off to the governors’s desk for signature . Please continue to support RPAC and pay “ your fair share “ as well as participate in your Call to Action requests

REALTOR® Day on Beacon Hill is scheduled for Wednesday, June 11, 2014, from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. at the State House, Great Hall. Once again, REALTORS® will have a chance to network and enjoy a continental breakfast before learning about the key legislative issues in 2014 that will affect the real estate industry and private property. Attend the REALTOR® Day on the Hill to get up close and personal with legislators and make an impact on the legislative process.

OUR 2014 VIP SPONSORS Award Winning Realtors Working with Award Winning Lenders The Mortgage Lending Team at Bank of Canton is proud to work with the Worcester Regional Association of Realtors ®. We’re eager to help you list and sell even more homes, so we’re dedicated to qualifying borrowers and ensuring we’re offering the products that they need, including Buy Worcester Now. Invite your client to experience the difference and find out first hand how our Mortgage Lending Team has maintained a Customer Satisfaction Score of 98%!

Your Trusted Lending Partners: To learn more about our home financing options for your clients, call 508.832.0078, visit us at 850 Southbridge Street in Auburn. Robert Bonofiglio

Regional Lending Manager NMLS# 454887

Gene Michael Deary Area Sales Manager NMLS# 454890

Arlette M. Lynch

Gary Premo

Regional Lending Manager Area Sales Manager NMLS# 39595 NMLS# 454909

508.832.0078 • 850 Southbridge St., Auburn, MA • Member FDIC. Member DIF.

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®


Committee on Government & Legislative Affairs 

  



MAR and its REALTOR® Members got their message through on Beacon Hill: That the Commonwealth’s economic house is built on Real Estate, and that economic recovery relies on the strength of the housing market. Here are some of our key accomplishments in 2013: GOVERNOR PATRICK’S FISCAL YEAR 2014 BUDGET RECOMMENDATION In January Governor Patrick filed his FY ’14 budget recommendation containing the repeal of three very important tax provisions for REALTORS®. MAR worked tirelessly to ensure that House of Representatives and Senate understood the importance of these provisions detailed below and maintained them in the budget. CAPTIAL GAINS EXCLUSION ON HOME SALES This section of the budget would have removed one of the main ways in which families accumulate wealth for retirement and the purchase of future homes. Had the Governor succeeded in eliminating this provision, the average homeowner would have been subject to a tax bill of over $4,000 just for selling a home. This would be the equivalent of an annual quarter-billion dollar sales tax on homes sales in Massachusetts. LEAD PAINT TAX CREDIT The repeal of this tax credit would have put children at a much greater risk for lead poisoning; particularly those children of low and moderate-income families who own or reside in older homes. The credit is also important as it can help bring much-needed vacant apartments back online that have been kept off the market because they have lead paint. TITLE V TAX CREDIT The repeal of this tax credit would have added significant financial strain on low- and moderate-income homeowners. Without this incentive, fewer people will upgrade failing septic systems which, as a result, would put the environment at significant risk. BROKER PRICE OPINIONS – (BPOs) Successfully Advocated for Amended Language in Legislation As the legislature moved to license and regulate home appraisals, MAR worked to ensure that the committee included language in the bill to allow REALTORS® to continue to offer BPOs without having to acquire an additional license. BPOs and CMAs are an important component of many listings, purchases, and sales that will now be protected as this bill advances through the legislative process. SHORT SALE PROTECTION Successfully Advocated for Amended Language in Legislation MAR effectively lobbied to amend the Debt Management Services bill to allow REALTORS® to continue to work with lenders and sellers in short sales without the fear of violating the law. As drafted, this bill would have prohibited REALTORS® from discussing or negotiating with the seller’s lender to modify the terms of an individual’s obligation to repay a loan secured by a listed property. Absent a change in the bill, real estate licensees involved in short sales would have been out of compliance with the law without having first obtained a new license. HOUSING BOND BILL Successfully Advocated for the Removal of Harmful 40B Provisions The five-year housing bond bill authorized $1.4 billion for housing in the commonwealth. More importantly, however, it originally contained harmful 40B provisions that would have severely weakened the affordable housing law in Massachusetts. MAR successfully advocated to the appointed conference committee to delete those harmful provisions from the bill. Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®


MAR NEWS Free Forms now Available Through zipLogix

New England REALTOR® Committee Conference

Your MAR Free Forms benefit is now offered through the zipLogix electronic forms platform. As a member, MAR’s Free Forms allows you to access the MassForms™ library at no additional cost above your membership dues.

Gary Rogers , 2014 Regional VP of the National Association of REALTORS®, cordially invites you to attend the New England REALTORS® Committee Conference.

On zipForm Plus, forms are displayed quickly, easy to navigate, and accessible on any mobile device. This is the essential real estate forms software designed specifically for today’s agents and brokers while maximizing efficiency, streamlining work flow and reducing risk.

For complete information about the conference, visit

Also available to members in the Free Forms package is zipVault, unlimited transaction storage all in one convenient online location and zipForm® Mobile, access to manage your online transactions from any mobile device. To get started, visit

Users of Form Simplicity:

MassForms will continue to be offered on the Form Simplicity platform. However, beginning February 1, 2014, the Professional Edition will be replaced with the Starter Edition of Form Simplicity. If you’d like to continue using Form Simplicity with the same functionalities you currently have, a fee will be required.


To get you quickly up to speed, zipLogix has a helpful tool called the zipForm Plus Quick Start Guide with information on Helpful Tools, Starting a File, zipForm® Plus Pro Tips and more. The guide lays out exactly how to go about creating and filling out forms in 9 easy to follow steps which include illustrations. To download the guide:

Technology Helpline

Dates: Cost: Place:

February 26th & 27th, 2014 $185 Gillette Stadium One Patriot Place Foxboro, MA 02035

MAR launches Returning Veterans Program

As a way to say thank you to new and current Massachusetts REALTORS® who have recently returned from active duty or deployment, MAR recently launched the Returning Veterans Program. Through this program, MAR and many local associations are offering REALTORS® who are recent military veterans free dues for at least a year. To qualify, you need to have returned from active duty or deployment within 36 months prior to the date of your REALTOR® membership application. To apply, you need to submit your DD 214 form for honorably and medically discharged veterans (or equivalent documentation) to your local REALTOR® association. Depending on the date of the membership application, the state dues waiver will be in effect for 12-23 months (balance of the remaining membership year plus 12 months). Contact your Lisa Sprague, Membership Manager, to see if you qualify and thank you for serving!

Please note that the Technology Helpline will no longer be available. This was a service contracted through Form Simplicity, as part of the former free forms agreement. Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®


NEW FORM - FLOOD INSURANCE NOTICE FLOOD INSURANCE NOTICE The mortgage lender for a buyer/owner may require that the buyer purchase and annually renew flood insurance in connection with the buyer’s purchase and ownership of a property. Some buyers who purchase without mortgage financing may also wish to purchase flood insurance. The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) provides for the availability of flood insurance, but also sets flood insurance policy premiums based on the risk of flooding in the area where a property is located. Due to amendments to federal law governing the NFIP and changes in flood maps, the premium may have increased over the premium previously charged for flood insurance for a particular property. As a result, a buyer should not rely on the premium paid previously for flood insurance on a particular property as an indication of the premium that will apply when the buyer purchases. When considering a purchase, the Buyer should consult with one or more carriers of flood insurance for information about flood insurance availability and terms, the premium that is likely to be charged for such insurance and information about how those premiums may increase in the future. Additional information may also be available from a real estate attorney.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF RECEIPT (Original for Real Estate Broker; Copy for Consumer)

Date: ___________________, 20___

Date: ___________________, 20___

Signature of Consumer [Buyer or Seller]

Signature of Consumer [Buyer or Seller]

The Notice is not required pursuant to any Massachusetts statute, regulation or standard. Real estate brokers/salespersons do not have the duty to investigate the availability or cost of flood insurance on behalf of a buyer or seller. The Buyer has the duty to exercise due diligence for the Buyer’s protection, including investigation of any information of importance to the Buyer. ©2013 Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® 47207.0/565834.1

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®



Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®

+ 2.6%

+ 9.2%

- 23.8%

Year-Over-Year Change in Closed Sales All Properties

Year-Over-Year Change in Median Sales Price All Properties

Year-Over-Year Change in Inventory of Homes All Properties


Single-Family Properties Closed Sales Median Sales Price* Inventory of Homes for Sale Months Supply of Inventory Cumulative Days on Market Until Sale Percent of Original List Price Received* New Listings

Year to Date







398 $214,950 2,366 5.8 146 90.5% 292

414 $235,000 1,767 3.9 122 92.8% 261

+ 4.0% + 9.3% - 25.3% - 33.0% - 16.8% + 2.5% - 10.6%

4,932 $220,000 --136 91.5% 8,158

5,500 $246,500

+ 11.5% + 12.0% --- 19.2% + 2.6% + 0.4%


Condominium Properties


Closed Sales Median Sales Price* Inventory of Homes for Sale Months Supply of Inventory Cumulative Days on Market Until Sale Percent of Original g List Price Received* New Listings

100 $197,500 534 6.0 171 93.1% 67

2013 97 $202,500 408 3.8 111 95.5% 72

--110 93.9% 8,190

Year to Date +/–


- 3.0% + 2.5% - 23.6% - 36.1% - 34.9% + 2.5% + 7.5%

1,063 $165,000 --152 92.4% 1,817

2013 1,272 $195,000 --117 95.7% 1,852

+/– + 19.7% + 18.2% --- 23.1% + 3.5% + 1.9%

* Does not account for seller concessions. | Activity for one month can sometimes look extreme due to small sample size.

Change in Median Sales Price from Prior Year (6-Month Average)** Single-Family Properties

Condominium Properties

All MLS Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®

All MLS Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®

+ 20%

+ 40%

+ 15%

+ 30%

+ 10%

+ 20%

+ 5%

+ 10%



- 5%

- 10%

- 10%

- 20%

- 15%

- 30%

- 20% 1-2008






- 40% 1-2008





b a


** Each dot represents the change in median sales price from the prior year using a 6-month weighted average. This means that each of the 6 months used in a dot are proportioned according to their share of sales during that period period. | All data from the Berkshire County Multiple Listing Service Service, Cape Cod & Islands Association of REALTORS® REALTORS®, Inc Inc. and MLS Property Information Network, Inc. | Provided by MAR MAR. | Powered by 10K Research and Marketing Marketing. Network Inc

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®



President, Dave Stead Pres. Elect, Brad Roberts Vice President, Kris Koliss Secretary, Sarah Gustafson Treasurer, Conrad Allen Past President, Rochelle Jonswold Kathleen Cooper, Director Jayne DiLiberto, Director Tracy Fiorelli, Director Erika Hall, Director Lorraine Herbert, Director Lee Joseph, Director Judy Patterson, Director Mary Stolarczyk, Director Leslie Storrs, Director Diane Dabrowski, Alternate Kathleen McSweeney, Alternate

SCHOLARSHIP DRIVE RAFFLE WRAR Scholarship Funds are designated for children or grandchildren of REALTOR® members, Affiliate members or full-time staff employees of the Association. Each year our Scholarship Committee reviews all applications, and makes decisions based on factors including academic achievement, school and sports involvement, community activities, work experience and the student’s goals and personal accomplishments. A minimum of two scholarships are awarded each year, with a minimum value of $500 each. We would love to be able to increase these amounts, but are dependent upon the monies available in the fund. In an effort to raise scholarship money, Wendy Burdett of Prospect Mortgage has very generously donated the use of her Myrtle Beach, South Carolina condominum for one week to one lucky winner. Raffle tickets are $25 each. Dates are subject to availability and can be arranged through Wendy. For more information on the condo, visit


To purchase a ticket, you may call the WRAR office at 508-832-6600 and ask for Lisa, or return the form below via fax to 508-832-6620.

Executive VP, Colleen Pappas


Membership Manager, Lisa Sprague Marketing Manager, Jacki D’Innocenzo Staff Accountant, Maura O’Connor Administrative Assistant, Lynne Walls

I want to enter! I will purchase: _____ One ticket for $25 I would like extra - _____ tickets for a total of $_____________.

Name__________________________________________________________________ Billing Address__________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________________

WRAR office hours are 9:00 am—5:00 pm. For assistance with the MLS Lockbox system, please make an appointment with Lynne Walls at 508832-6600. Please LIKE our facebook page at https://www. fa c e b o o k . c o m / WorcesterRegionalAssociationofREALTORS.

email__________________________________________________________________ Telephone______________________________________________________________ Credit Card_____________________________________________________________ Expiration Date__________________________________________________________

By doing so you will not only get up-tothe-minute information on everything going on at WRAR, but you will help us to increase our visibility while growing your own business network.

Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®


Connections February 2014  
Connections February 2014  

Monthly member newsletter for the Worcester Regional Association of REALTORS®