Weekly 3-12-13

Illinois REALTOR® Weekly Connection


Free Webinar: Screen to Screen Selling

Join trainer Doug Devitre at noon Thursday for the latest webinar in IAR's Lunch and Learn series, "Screen to Screen Selling: How to sell without being physically present." In this FREE one-hour webinar for IAR members only, you will learn about the tools to use when you can't meet clients face-to-face. Devitre, also a featured speaker at IAR's Spring Conference in Collinsville, May 8-9, will share tips for decreasing the labor intensity of converting appointments, increasing brand power by differentiating your customer service experience and boosting your sales performance. Click this link to learn more about joining the webinar Thursday. And don't forget to register for another IAR webinar, "HomePath Short Sale: Improving the Short Sale Experience," on March 21, presented by Fannie Mae.

IAR Broker Management CE Webinars Underway

There is still time to register for one of the remaining two-day classes designed to get managing brokers the 12 hours of broker management continuing education credit they may need by the April 30 deadline. (Broker Management CE is only required if you transitioned your license by Proficiency Exam). IAR offers the classes in an interactive online format for $159, or you can attend the classroom sessions at IAR's Springfield office for $139. See the list of upcoming sessions:

Find the new Q & A for answers to your license renewal questions. You also can take the proctored exam for the IAR Broker Management CE Webinars at one of 13 convenient kiosk locations.

Industry News & Trends

Immigrant Homebuyers Help Fuel Housing Demand

Foreign-born buyers have been an important factor in thegrowing demand for housing, both to buy and to rent, in the last decade. That dynamic is expected to continue into 2020, according to a study by the Mortgage Bankers Association'sResearch Institute for Housing America.

IRS Tax Tips for Mortgage Debt Forgiveness  

Your REALTOR® organization and RPAC helped extend the Mortgage Forgiveness Debt Relief Act through Jan. 1, 2014. This helps home owners and sellers who have a portion of their mortgage debt forgiven by their lender, typically in a short sale, foreclosure or mortgage modification. Without the extension, forgiven debt would be taxable, creating a tax burden. Share these 10 tax facts on mortgage debt forgiveness from the IRS. 

Fannie Mae: Consumer Confidence in Housing Market Grows

Consumers have positive attitudes toward housing and the number of people who believe home prices will increase over the next year has risen to a record high, according to Fannie Mae's latest National Housing Survey.

Legal Issues

Craigslist Rental Scams  

IAR occasionally receives calls from members who suspect their sales listings have been posted on craigslist.org as rental listings when these properties are not for rent at all. If you believe this has happened to you, or you want to learn more about preventing it from happening, go to www.craigslist.org/about/scams.

Escrow Accounts and Record-Keeping Requirements  

Questions about escrow accounts and record-keeping requirements? Find answers in a resource from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, "Escrow Account and Record Keeping Requirements."

Sales & Marketing

It Takes More Than Luck to Succeed

Motivational speaker Dr. Tom Hill will outline the six characteristics that differentiate the most successful 15 percent of people from the rest and share six resources that can help you succeed at the IAR Spring Conference & Expo in Collinsville, May 8-9. Register by the March 27 early-bird deadline and IAR members pay only $99 for a two-day event that includes six hours of CE.

Realtor.com Launches Redesign

If you use Realtor.com, you'll notice a new look including a newlogo and a streamlined design that NAR believes will be more user friendly for REALTORS® and consumers.

Worst Commutes by Zip Code

The average U.S. commute may be 25.4 minutes according to census data, but some commuters sit in traffic far longer than that. Search by zip code to find average commute times in your community with this interactive map published by Slate.com.

Legislative & Advocacy

Did You Know?

RPAC is the only political group in the country organized for REALTORS® and run by REALTORS®. RPAC exists solely to further issues important to REALTORS®. And it saves you money. Read What Is, What Isn't Law Because of RPAC.Contribute to RPAC(Disclaimer: The Illinois REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) solicits contributions from IAR members only.)

State Capitol Update

With just two weeks for the 5,800 bills introduced during the spring legislative session to have a hearing in one of 68 committees of the Illinois General Assembly, your IAR lobbyists are hard at work protecting your business interests from burdensome legislation. Read the latest State Capitol Report


March 27

Early bird deadline for IAR Spring Conference, May 8-9 in Collinsville. Register now and IAR members pay only $99.

April 1  

Applications for the Real Estate Educational Foundation's(REEF) academic scholarships must be submitted by April 1.  

April 15-16

The Illinois Housing Leaders Conference and the Capitol Conference "REALTOR®" Lobby Day" will be held in Springfield.  

April 16-18

IAR Business Meetings will be held in Springfield. 

April 17

REALTOR® of the Year Banquet. Join the Illinois Real Estate Educational Foundation and IAR in honoring the 2013 Illinois REALTOR® of the Year and all local Board REALTORS® of the year on April 17 in Springfield. Order your dinner ticket by April 3

April 26  

IAR Multicultural Summit: Opportunities in the Caribbean and South Africa will be held in Oak Brook. 

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March 12, 2013