The Virginia REALTORS® proudly announce the 2017 award recipients. The awards ceremony took place at the Installation and Awards Banquet in conjunction with the 2017 Annual Convention at the Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center.
Please join us in congratulating this year’s winners!
Virginia REALTOR® of the Year:
Pat Sury, Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS®
Virginia REALTOR® Hall of Fame:
Joe Carney, Virginia Peninsula Association of REALTORS®
Lynn Grimsley, Virginia Peninsula Association of REALTORS®
Pat Jensen, Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS® (*Given posthumously, honoring her remarkable legacy)
Code of Ethics Leadership Award:
Rives Bailey, Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS®
Virginia Manager of the Year, Sponsored by Pearl Insurance:
Dawn Bradley, Richmond Association of REALTORS®
George Rink Outstanding Real Estate Educator Award:
Cindy Stackhouse, Prince William Association of REALTORS®
Virginia Certified Residential Specialist of the Year:
Kim Atkinson, Richmond Association of REALTORS®
Women’s Council of REALTORS® State Member of the Year:
Regina Scott, Virginia Peninsula Association of REALTORS®
Virginia Housing Development Authority Service to Virginia Award:
Libby Gatewood, Richmond Association of REALTORS®
Jay Mitchell was installed as 2018 President at the Virginia REALTORS® Annual Convention held at the Hotel Roanoke & Conference Center and will begin serving as President in November. A REALTOR® for the past 13 years, Mitchell is recognized for his leadership in the industry, and currently serves as Managing Broker with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Towne Realty of Virginia Beach.
Since beginning his real estate career in 2004, Jay has been very active with the REALTOR® community. He led the National Association of REALTORS® Federal Political Coordinator (FPC) team for U.S. Senator Tim Kaine in 2016, and he served as the Virginia REALTORS® FPC for former congressman Glenn Nye. In addition, Jay is on the FPC team for Congressman Bobby Scott. He holds ten real estate designations, including the Graduate, REALTOR® Institute (GRI) and the Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) designation, the highest credential awarded to residential sales agents, managers, and brokers.
Mitchell has chaired the Virginia REALTORS® Strategic Planning Committee, Public Policy Committee, and Legislative Bill Review Committee. He is a former chair of the RPAC Trustees, and he has served on the Virginia REALTORS® Board of Directors since 2013.
In 2016, Mitchell was selected as Broker/Manager of the Year by the Hampton Roads REALTORS® Association, and he is currently a licensed real estate broker in Virginia, North Carolina, and Nebraska.
According to the August 2017 Home Sales Report released by the Virginia REALTORS®, the residential real estate market continues to exhibit long-term strength. Year-to-date volume (the sum of all sales) for the period of January through August rose 8.9 percent over the same period in 2016, from $28.661 billion to $26.311 billion. Year‐over‐year, transactions in the month of August contracted by less than a tenth of one percent, from 11,795 to 11,787. Demand has continued to outpace supply, keeping prices elevated and days on the market relatively low.
According to Claire Forcier-Rowe, 2017 President of the Virginia REALTORS®, “Loosened inventory and a drop in rates contributed to strong sales in August. Moving off the summer peak, we typically see the number and speed of transactions cool off. This year’s market has illustrated that buyers in every season are eager to get into homes with historically advantageous financing.”
Statewide median sales price for August 2017 was $280,000, an increase of 2.6 percent from the median price last August ($273,000). Median price has risen 6.9 percent since August 2014 (from $261,950). Typical of industry seasonality, August median price declined 5.1 percent from July’s $295,000. Illustrating continued buyer motivation, the average number of days on the market was 3.3 percent lower than at the same time last year (58 days, versus 60 in August 2016). Month‐over‐month, average time from list to close lengthened by 13.7 percent, keeping with historical seasonal trends.
August 2017 volume (the sum of all transactions) was $4.003 billion, rising 2.6 percent over last August’s volume of $3.903 billion. As a multiplier of pace and price, the gain in volume was attributed to higher prices, as pace was relatively flat. Month‐over‐month, volume fell 2.5 percent (from $4.106 billion). As market activity tends to contract following the June peak, declines in volume are expected.
The average 30‐year fixed mortgage interest fell in August to 3.88 percent, its lowest level since November 2016. Virginia unemployment held steady with its July figure at a seasonally‐adjusted rate of 3.8 percent, continuing to track well below the national rate.
You can access the entire August Home Sales Report by clicking here.
The Virginia REALTORS® salute the heroes of America’s armed forces, past and present.
Each year on this day, the nation pauses to remember the victims and heroes of the attacks of September 11, 2001. Sixteen years later, we pay our respects to those who lost loved ones, and we honor the sacrifices made by those men and women who so bravely take on the responsibility of defending our nation.
In honor of our nation’s heroes, Virginia REALTORS® proudly supports Homes For Our Troops, a non-profit committed to providing mortgage-free, specially adapted housing for the most severely injured Veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan. These customized homes offer these Veterans the chance to focus on recovering and enjoying time with their families. Each specially designed home offers features such as pull-down shelving and widened hallways for wheelchair access, depending on each Veteran’s needs. The organization continues its relationship with the Veterans long after the homes are completed, assisting them with rebuilding their lives.
Virginia REALTORS® have partnered with Homes For Our Troops for the past three years, and we hope that on this day of remembrance and reflection, you’ll consider making a donation to this worthy organization. Click here to learn more about Homes For Our Troops, or to make a donation.
Preparedness Month, observed nationwide in September, reminds Virginians to collect supplies and make and share a plan for the protecting their families, homes, and communities in the event of an emergency or disaster. Virginia REALTORS® encourages all Virginians to ready themselves for hurricane season by making plans for how to stay safe and communicate during an emergency.
The overwhelming destruction caused by Hurricane Harvey illustrates how vast the impact of a disaster can be. Since natural disasters can inhibit channels of communication, the first step to safety planning is to inform close contacts about the course of action in case of emergency. Thinking through potential dangers during Preparedness Month can prevent or lessen damage to homes and threats to personal safety. Virginians are encouraged to consider family members, pets, and the elderly, as well as transportation routes and property safeguards in developing an emergency plan of action.
To assist Virginians with weather-related disasters, the Virginia Department of Emergency Management and its Ready Virginia app offer resources that include check lists of essential supplies, step-by-step guides for staying safe in emergency conditions, and instructions to stay informed of critical updates.
As the effects of Hurricane Harvey continue to devastate, forcing over 30,000 people into shelters across Texas, the Virginia REALTORS® are responding to the needs of the southeast Texas community by donating $10,000 to the Texas Association of REALTORS® Relief Fund. The fund was created with the mission of helping people who have suffered losses due to natural disasters in Texas. Individuals who have sustained property damage or have been displaced due to Harvey’s unprecedented flooding can apply to receive assistance from this fund.
These efforts reflect the importance of community service in the REALTOR® community. If you wish to support these relief efforts, monetary donations are the most effective method of contribution. These donations can be used adaptably as needs arise on the ground. You can learn more about the coordination of relief efforts by the Texas Association of REALTORS® or make a donation to the Texas Association of REALTORS® Relief Fund by clicking here.
According to the July 2017 Home Sales Report released by the Virginia REALTORS®, the residential real estate market continues to surge. Year‐to-date volume (the sum of all sales) for the period of January through July rose 9.7 percent over the same period in 2016, from $22.411 billion to $24.593 billion. Year‐over‐year, transactions in the month of July reduced by less than half of one percent: from 11,549 to 11,495. Inventory constraints continue to affect the number of sales and also drive price upward, as eager buyers demand more than the current market supplies.
Claire Forcier‐Rowe, 2017 President of the Virginia REALTORS®, shares “Low rates and lasting consumer confidence have propelled buyers into Virginia’s market faster than sellers are committing to list their properties. Without certainty that there will be inventory to move to, prospective sellers are reluctant to list. So, there’s a premium on new inventory that’s evident in the price trends and speed of transactions this year.”
The statewide median sales price for July 2017 was $295,000, an increase of 6 percent from the median price last July ($278,275). Typical of seasonal trends, July median price tapered from June’s $299,000, declining 1.3 percent. Sustained price elevation indicates continued strong demand. Further illustrating the high motivation of buyers, the average number of days on the market remained notably low at 50 days. The average number of days on the market in July 2016 was 60 days. Average transaction speed has quickened by 16.7 percent in the last twelve months.
July 2017 volume (the sum of all transactions) was $4.069 billion, rising 4.4 percent over last July’s volume of $3.898 billion. As a multiplier of pace and price, the gain in volume was attributed solely to higher prices, as pace was relatively flat. Month‐over‐month, volume fell 20 percent (from $5.085 billion). The steep decline is typical of the industry’s seasonality, as market activity contracts following the June peak.
Click here to view the full July 2017 Home Sales Report.
As the city of Charlottesville heals in the aftermath of recent tragic events, local REALTORS® are taking action as community ambassadors. This week, team members at real estate brokerage Nest Realty are gathering to select a charity focused on community building and to develop plans for fundraising. The team’s goal is to select a charity that will help combat messages of hate and inspire long-term healing.
In a recent interview with Inman, Anne Gardner, CEO of the Charlottesville Area Association of REALTORS®, expressed her hope for the city’s future, saying, “Every REALTOR® (around the country) has to feel the impact of an event like Charlottesville because it affects so many communities. As REALTORS®, we are deeply connected to the communities in which we live, work and volunteer… We are a peaceful community, extremely collaborative by nature, and the speed by which the community has moved toward healing is something which we can draw upon.”
The National Association of REALTORS® responded to the tragic events by reiterating their Code of Ethics in the following statement: “NAR is proud that the REALTOR® Code of Ethics distinguishes our members and encourages respect and fairness among REALTORS®, and the consumers they serve. Attempts to authorize and encourage discrimination under any banner is ethically wrong and wholly inconsistent with the fundamental principles of the REALTOR® Code of Ethics.”
Photos courtesy of Homes for Our Troops & Steve Overgard
Virginia REALTORS® President Claire Forcier-Rowe delivered remarks at a very special ceremony on Saturday, August 12. A cheering crowd lined the streets around a newly constructed home in Mechanicsville, many of them proudly waving American flags. Forcier-Rowe was taking part in a Key Ceremony with Homes for Our Troops, a nonprofit dedicated to providing severely wounded veterans with specially adapted, fully accessible homes.
Saturday’s ceremony honored Army Sergeant (Retired) James “JP” McGuire and his family. McGuire lost his right leg after stepping on an improvised explosive device (IED) in Tunnis, Iraq. He was serving as a combat engineer with the 3rd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division. McGuire’s grueling recovery included over 30 surgeries.
Now, McGuire, his wife Brittney, and their two young children will have a safe, mortgage free home, which McGuire calls “a gift from God.” Despite his unquestionable heroism, McGuire insists, “The HFOT organization, donors, supporters, and volunteers are the real heroes. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for all that you do, not just for me but also for all of my comrades.”
If you would like to support the Virginia REALTORS® partnership with HFOT, please consider a donation or learn more by clicking here.