Category Archives: RZ entries

Posts by RZ and comments added

Scam Alert! NAR Cautions Against Scam REALTOR® Complaint Website

Scam Alert! NAR Cautions Against Scam REALTOR® Complaint Website
Don’t be a victim of a website that NAR reports is misusing the REALTOR® trademark in what seems to be an attempt to get money from real estate practitioners. The site,, supposedly publishes “consumer” complaints about real estate agents and then offers them the “opportunity” to pay to have the complaint and their name removed from the site, NAR reports in the blog post, “Don’t Let Your Reputation—or Your Wallet—Fall Prey to Scam Complaint Site.”

Do you have buyers sitting on the fence?

The Most Awesome Opportunity in American History Just Arrived

By Dr. Steve Sjuggerud

Friday, September 7, 2012

The situation we’re facing today can be boiled down to a few very simple points… And the result is an awesome investment opportunity.

It is possibly the greatest investing opportunity in American history…

I’m talking about the housing market.

Real estate investor Jason Hartman interviewed me this week on his radio show (available soon at And I made my case.

My points were simple:


Housing prices have fallen more than they ever have in our lifetimes – by far. Today, houses are selling for well below replacement cost.


Meanwhile… housing prices are up for five-straight months. It sure seems like they’ve bottomed.


Mortgage rates are at record-lows – around 3.5% today. With low home prices and low interest rates, houses are more affordable than ever.

But the story gets better…

You have a huge “tailwind” for rising prices, courtesy of the government.

First, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke will not raise rates for years.

You see, he will only raise interest rates when inflation gets too high or when the economy is booming (specifically, when the unemployment rate falls too far). We are not in danger of either of those things happening right now – and we won’t be in danger for a couple years.

So interest rates will stay low for longer than anyone can imagine… And these record-low interest rates should be like lighter fluid on a fire. It’s taken a while to get started… But with higher home prices over the last five months, the fire is now lit.

Second, I can’t think of an asset that has more government incentives than the home you live in.

Let me show you what I mean…

You can deduct the interest on your mortgage off your taxes. You get to keep up to $500,000 in capital gains on your home without having to pay any capital gains taxes. And on roughly 90% of home loans, the government has literally made those loans possible (through government-sponsored entities like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac).

In short, the government wants you to own a home… This is simply adding more fuel to the fire.

And for most regular folks, your home is a much better use of your savings than stashing your money in stocks…

Buy what you understand. When you own a home, you know what you’ve got – the earth under your feet isn’t going out of business. But you could easily buy shares of a company that goes out of business. So today, I suggest putting your savings into your primary residence.

In sum, I believe that starting today, single-family home prices will soar higher than anyone can imagine in the next couple years.

The gains in housing prices will surprise everyone – and you certainly haven’t missed it yet. This trend is just beginning. And it will last for years to come.

I believe we have the most awesome opportunity in American history in single-family homes – right now. Do your best to take advantage of it…

Good investing,


Your Virtual Tours are included with Charles Rutenberg Realty

Here are some examples of how your CirclePix virtual tour will look. Be sure to click the links along the left side when you are viewing the tours. One of the included features is a one page flyer you or your client or prospect can print. The MLS takes 16 photos so always upload that many to make the best virtual tours. These tours are also posted as youtube videos on our site, If you have questions, our account manager is Quinn Youngberg <[email protected]>

Don't Lose Your License, Transition!

Click Here for the page covering the following.

April 30, 2012 is the deadline to transition your Illinois real estate license from Salesperson to Broker or Broker to Managing Broker.

NEW! Transition Home Study and Test Locations

IAR has added additional testing sites for members to take the proctored exam for Salesperson to Broker transition “30-Hour Home Study Course to Transition from Salesperson to Broker” (Item #625 in the IAR REALTOR® Store) AND the 45-hour home study course available from the IAR REALTOR® Store for $195 (Item #629). Order online from (category “Pre-License”).

> To learn about what steps you need to take, and where to take the exams, go here.

Need CE before April 30? Think Green Home Study
If you need Continuing Education credits, consider the Green Home Study options, your most cost-effective option at $19.95 per 3-hour course and includes your proctored exam. Order from the IAR REALTOR® Store or download the Green Home Study order form (pdf).

Broker to Managing Broker Transition
Just getting started? Your best option is the 45-hour home study course available from the IAR REALTOR® Store for $195 (Item #629). After successful completion of this course and exam, you will have completed the required education hours to transition your license to the new Managing Broker category. NOTE: This course will exempt Managing Brokers from the 12-hour Broker Management CE. Managing Brokers will still be required to complete the 18 hours of regular CE by April 30, 2013. For this transition option, you must use the paper application form from IDFPR, and it must be postmarked by April 30, 2012.

Broker Staying Broker
Renew your broker license and complete 12 hours of CE by April 30, 2012.

Sole Proprietors
Remember, sole proprietors or “self-sponsored” brokers are required to either transition to the Managing Broker license or maintain your Broker license status and become sponsored by another sponsoring Broker.

Don’t Forget to Make Your Transition Application to IDFPR – Postmark by April 30
Here is the IDFPR link for the transition applications “Broker to Managing Broker Transition Application Form” or “Salesperson to Broker Transition/Renewal Application Form:” Applications MUST be mailed to IDFPR with a postmark no later than April 30, 2012. NOTE: Managing Brokers do not renew their license until 2013.
> Failure to complete the IDFPR transition application by April 30, 2012 could result in loss of your license even if you have completed the education requirement.

Continuing Education – All real estate licensees are required to complete continuing education (CE) during each two-year licensing period. Take CE courses from the convenience of your home with text-based and on-line programs, or find traditional classroom courses available throughout the state.

Use the IAR Education Lookup to check your CE status for IAR-sponsored education courses for Broker renewal, which is also required by April 30, 2012. (NOTE: Those transitioning to Managing Broker must transition by April 30, 2012 but won’t renew until April 30, 2013.) Only IAR-sponsored courses will appear.
Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation’s CE Look Up.
Classroom, home study, online CE options – IAR REALTOR® Store 1-800-529-2696

Orders from the IAR REALTOR® Store 1-800-529-2696

Exam locations and test results? [email protected] or [email protected]

CE status? [email protected] or [email protected]

Transition & Proficiency Help Line: Call 877-538-5861 or [email protected]

Transition Frequently Asked Questions

For licensure information contact the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, 217/785-9300,

Many housing markets hit bottom three years ago in early 2009

The housing industry fell apart quickly and then began a protracted recovery.

Many housing markets hit bottom three years ago in early 2009 when prognosticators claimed that home prices had much further to fall, according to data released by Pro Teck Valuation Services.

The Waltham, Mass.-based real estate valuation firm explored the turnover rate (number of non-distressed sales divided by the total housing stock in a region) as an indication of future home prices. The analysis, the firm says, demonstrates that home prices in many areas are already rebounding from the bottom of the market.

“The Miami and Los Angeles markets are highly representative of what we foresee for most of the important coastal U.S. real estate markets,” Pro Teck Chief Executive Tom O’Grady said. “In particular, we see stabilizing and then gradually increasing prices over the next few years.” Read the full article