News

Recent news, business resources and press releases.

FAAR Releases Regional Housing Studies

In mid-2016, FAAR members and leadership returned from a conference energized about what great work other associations throughout the country had accomplished with a National Association of Realtors® (NAR) Smart Growth grant. This grant is available to help local associations partner with local governments and other stakeholders to plan for the population of tomorrow.

FAAR engaged with the local Chamber of Commerce, Fredericksburg Regional Alliance, local governments, and other stakeholders to scope out a regional study. FAAR applied for and received nearly $20,000 in grants from the NAR Smart Growth program and the Virginia Realtors® Issue Mobilization Fund to conduct the study. The studies provide a baseline housing assessment of each locality in our service territory to include the City of Fredericksburg, and the counties of Caroline, King George, Spotsylvania, and Stafford. The studies also include projections for how much housing will be needed in each jurisdiction over the next 15 years.

Take me to the studies!

Beware of a suspicious man…

Beware of a suspicious man…

This is forwarded from a FAAR Broker in the King George area.

Please read the following, and feel free to pass it on to the greater FAAR membership, however you feel it should be presented. I know these sort of incidents do happen, and are broadcast by the association. I trust you will share it as you feel appropriate. Feel free to edit and shorten as necessary.

We had an incident at our office yesterday that I feel we should share with our fellow Realtors. At 4 pm yesterday afternoon, we had a walk-in inquiring about homes for sale in the area. The female agent on duty happened to be solo in the office at the time, a rarer thing during our open business hours. Our facility is in a shopping complex of like business units. At that time of day, there’s people milling about, getting their pizzas at Domino’s, dropping their kids off at The Dance Studio, the Veterinarians, etc. Most businesses are fully open and there’s plenty of parking lot traffic. The following occurred in broad daylight:

The ‘prospect’ asked questions about properties, described what he and his wife were looking for, took a business card, and initiated arrangements to see houses this weekend, and generally behaved as one would expect a prospect to. This was all at our front reception desk, which as you know is immediately within our all glass front. He asked if he could use our restroom, which he did, returned to the front desk, asked for some lender cards, which our agent retrieved from some racks we have just around the corner. He followed her there, which she felt a little uncomfortable with, but they went back to the front desk and he left. Presumably the whole guise of being a buyer was intended to give him opportunity to scope out the office and see if she was alone.

About a minute later he came back in and was acting very odd, nervous, and she knew something was up. He made some comment about he and his wife were ‘swingers’ and maybe she would like to join them, and that we wanted to show our her something. She said “no, I don’t want to see anything, go away” (she thought it might be a gun, thank goodness it wasn’t at least), then he exposed himself. As they were standing near the front door, our agent shoved him literally right out the front door (which was simply her reflex under stress), and he left running down the street. Fortunately, he never touched her in any way and she wasn’t injured.

Our agent immediately called 911. The Sheriff’s Department sent over a Deputy who took a report.

Description of the perpetrator: Black male approximately 5′ 7″, bald, stalky with muscular build about 30-35 yrs old. He was wearing black polyester sport shorts, grey or light green T-shirt.

We are so thankful that it wasn’t more serious, but this incident should also serve to remind all of us who work in this profession that we cannot let our guards down, and should be diligent in ensuring our own safety. There are many resources for doing so, and I encourage everyone to take some time to look into how you can protect yourself from being a victim.

Take the 2017 Membership Survey and you could win a $300 gift card!

It is time to take stock again in preparation for strategic planning. The 2015 strategic plan listed goals in specific areas. Over the last three years, through the coordinated efforts of members and staff, milestones were achieved. Please review the accomplishments and then take the survey that follows to assist in the goal setting for the 2018 Plan.

 

Take this short 10-question survey and you could win a gift card worth $100, $200, or $300!

Before you start look at what you have achieved…

Membership
Networking opportunities were expanded through Town Hall meetings and a variety of social events
A new website provided a user-friendly vehicle for registering and accessing information/news
Stepped up marketing of FAAR recognitions (awards) resulted in an increase in applications
Quarterly surveying of the membership revealed their needs and wants
An active Managing Broker Network encouraged a collegial atmosphere of cooperation
For the second year in a row, FAAR subsidized the cost of the members Sentrilock subscription fee

Education and Professional Development
A successful Orientation program, in an interactive environment, generated enthusiasm for belonging to FAAR
The Success Series provided street smarts information for newer agents
Hundreds of classes filled the needs of thousands of students on current topics
A new Ombudsman program diffused conflicts before they reach a formal complaint
Professional standards education was deepened by providing NAR case studies on the FAAR website

Advocacy, RPAC
Roundtable discussions with members and elected officials in the areas FAAR serves created mutual understanding
Depicting local examples of REALTOR® involvement in land use issues increased RPAC contributions by members
Extensive candidate interviews and elected official relationship building clarified interests
Expanded joint activities with the Chamber and FABA on mutual topics of interest expanded the influence of all

Community (Consumer) Outreach
Statistical housing information disseminated to the media and the public portrayed the correct economic profile
Published articles in the Free Lance Star’s House & Home on housing showed the value of REALTORS®
Distribution of thousands of dollars to area agencies by the Fredericksburg REALTORS® Foundation exemplified FAAR’s willingness to give back to the community
Grants awarded to FAAR to fund housing projects and studies supplied the information to support findings

Keep your eyes peeled for Realtor rocks!

Members and friends of the Fredericksburg Realtors® Foundation gathered on Thursday night to paint rocks in support of the charity.  Wait, what?  Paint rocks?  Oh, yes!  The rock craze has officially swept through the region with kids begging parents to go on hikes to find rocks, people snapping pics of their favorite rocks and posting them to Facebook, and people spending hours painting the perfect rock to hide.  The rocks can be found all over the region and bring a smile to the finder’s face!

The Foundation raised over $200 at this fundraiser which provided 3 rocks, painting supplies, and refreshments for those in attendance.  Keep your eyes peeled for some of these great rocks around town!

 

Hot Local Housing Market Continues into July

Fredericksburg, VA (August 11, 2017) The following analysis of the Fredericksburg, Virginia area housing market has been prepared by the Fredericksburg Area Association of REALTORS® based data provided by Bright MLS (formerly MRIS). 

The temperature wasn’t the only thing heating up during the dog days of summer, with the local real estate market posting another month of increasing sales, median price, and units sold coupled with decreasing days on market.  Total sold dollar volume was up 14.15% compared to July of 2016 coming in at $196,474,044.  This increase was fueled by a more than 9% increase in median sold price and a nearly 8% increase in units sold compared to the same time last year.  In July of 2016, the market saw a median sales price of $275,000.  That price increased to $301,000 in July of 2017.  Units sold came in at 578 in July of 2016 compared to 622 in July of 2017.  “This is an interesting time in real estate,” stated FAAR 2017 President-Elect Kevin McGrath.  “Offices are busier than they have been in quite a while.  A lot of new agents are finding themselves getting busier much more quickly than new agents in the past.”

Days on market, the amount of time it takes from when a listing enters the market until it has a ratified contract, decreased over 13%, going from 53 days in July of 2016 to just 46 days in July of 2017.  “If a property is priced right, within 20 minutes of it going active in the Multiple Listing Service is seems like agents are setting up showings,” commented McGrath.

Inventory continues to be a challenge in our market with yet another month of fewer listings than the previous year.  July of 2016 saw 1,815 active listings on the market and July of 2017 had 4.9% less at 1,726.  At the current time, there is a 3.56-month supply of available homes, a healthy market generally has about a 5-month supply of homes.

While sellers are putting their homes on the market more than last year, it isn’t enough to keep pace with demand.  July saw a 3.45% increase in new listings with 839 added to the market in 2017 compared to 811 in July of 2016.  “Rising prices are due to a lack of inventory,” continued McGrath.  “We need sellers to list their homes in greater numbers than we’re seeing to satisfy the increasing demand in the market.”

FAAR to Host Candidate Interviews for Local Elections

On Tuesday, August 22, 2017, the FAAR Public Policy Committee will interview candidates running for local office including seats in the General Assembly and local Boards of Supervisors.  Each candidate is sent a candidate survey to gather information on where the individual stands on issues such as transportation, growth policies, and taxes.  While the Committee members’ main goal is to get to know the candidate and whether they will be supportive of the real estate industry, the interview also serves as a great opportunity for the candidates to learn more about FAAR and the concerns of our members.

The interviews are open to the entire FAAR membership, but only those members who serve on the Public Policy Committee are permitted to ask questions of the candidates.  The Committee will go into executive session after the interviews have concluded and decide who, if anyone, to endorse in each seat that had a candidate the group interviewed.  This process is a great way to establish a relationship with new elected officials from the beginning.  The candidate interview schedule is published below, please RSVP to Kim McClellan at kmcclellan@faarmembers.com if you would like to attend the interviews.

Interview Schedule

Morning Session

8am:  Cindy Shelton (Stafford County Board of Supervisors, Aquia District)

8:30am:  Nelson Gentry (Spotsylvania County Board of Supervisors, Berkeley District)

9:00am:  Open

9:30am:  Chris Yakabouski (Spotsylvania County Board of Supervisors, Battlefield District)

10am:  Kevin Marshall (Spotsylvania County Board of Supervisors, Berkeley District)

10:30am:  Cathy Binder (King George County Board of Supervisors, Shiloh District)

11:00am:  Greg Cebula (Spotsylvania County Board of Supervisors, Berkeley District)

 

Afternoon Session

3:30pm:  Greg Bundrick (Stafford County Board of Supervisors, Falmouth District)

4:00pm:  Mark Dudenhefer (Stafford County Board of Supervisors, Garrisonville District)

4:30pm:  Yolanda Rousell (Stafford County Board of Supervisors, Aquia District)

5:30pm:  Meg Bohmke (Stafford County Board of Supervisors, Falmouth District)

6:00pm:  Laura Sellers (Stafford County Board of Supervisors, Garrisonville District)

6:30pm:  Joshua Cole (House of Delegates, District 28)

7pm:  Bob Thomas (House of Delegates, District 28)

2018 Board of Directors Slate of Candidates Announced

2018 Board of Directors Slate of Candidates Announced

 

“Additional candidates for the offices to be filled may be placed in nomination by signed petition of at least twenty percent* of the REALTOR® members. The petition shall be filed with the Secretary (Chief Executive Officer) By August 16, 2017. The Secretary (Chief Executive Officer) shall send notice of such additional nominations to all REALTOR® members before the election.”
(As of 6/30/17 there are 1566 REALTOR® members. 313 names are needed to complete the petition requirement and be sent to FAAR by August 16, 2017.)

Sample Ballot
Slate of Candidates- 2018 Leadership
Election September 13, 2017
FAAR offers electronic voting and the ballot will be sent in an email to each REALTOR® member on August 23. Those who want to vote with a paper ballot can do so by going to the Election table in the Lobby of the Expo at the September 13 Expo from 9 am to 1 pm. Election results will be announced after 2 pm at the Expo on September 13.

Candidates for 2017 Election for the Year 2018

President Kevin McGrath- Long & Foster, Inc.
*President-Elect Drew Fristoe, Coldwell Banker Elite, Massaponax
*Vice President Arlene Mason, Coldwell Banker Elite Realty
Secretary Mark Geslock, Century 21 Redwood
Treasurer Carrie Danko, 1st Choice Better Homes & Land, Fredericksburg
(a two-year term)
Immediate Past President Linda Fosdick, ABR, CRS, GRI- Dockside Realty

Directors- Three candidates for three positions. Select up to three.
__ Pam Kuper, Century 21 New Millennium
__ Clay Murray, Coldwell Banker Elite, Spotsylvania
__ Sandy Pearce, Coldwell Banker Elite, Spotsylvania

Three candidates for 1 affiliate position. Select one.
__ Phillip Blake, MBH Settlement Group
__ Barry Moore, ALCOVA Mortgage
__ Donna Schmidt, American Home Shield

*Please note that Drew Fristoe is now running for 2018 President-Elect. Arlene Mason, the current Vice President, asked that her name not be forwarded for 2018 President-Elect. Due to a family medical issue, Arlene requested that she remain Vice President in 2018 and be considered for the President-Elect position in 2019.

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