GMAR WEEKLY eNEWSLETTER
MESSAGE FROM GMAR CHAIRWOMAN KIM CURTIS
Dear GMAR Members,

It’s hard to believe we’re on the cusp of another banner year. January was a hair behind January 2021, and from what I’ve seen, February was the same. What will March bring?
 
With interest rates creeping up, we hopefully won’t see dozens of offers on listings. If it does get crazy, remember your clients hired you to counsel them through the home-buying process. So, be wary of “Love Letters” and advise them about contingencies they may think about declining. This market is the perfect opportunity for you to prove your worth.
 
The GMAR will be unveiling a new Code of Ethics Champion program in the coming days. We are going to recognize the ethics leaders among our membership. So, stay tuned for more information.
 
Finally, the 2022 REALTORS® Home & Garden Show is on! After a 2-year hiatus, the show is back at the Wisconsin State Fair Park running from March 25 – April 3, 2022.
 
Thank you for being a GMAR member.
 
Sincerely,

Kim Curtis
2022 Chairwoman of the Board 
PAST CHAIRS/PRESIDENTS LUNCHEON
Mike Ruzicka, GMAR President, Mike Theo, WRA President & CEO, and Chris Carrillo, Multiple Listing Service CEO, provided an industry update to the past elected leaders of our association. Many in attendance served as Presidents and Chairs for the Milwaukee, Waukesha, and Washington Associations.  
THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS WHEN WE ADVOCATE
This note from WRA’s Tom Larson went to all REALTOR & Government Day attendees.

Because you attended REALTOR® & Government Day (RGD) and you advocated for our issues, four of the WRA's bills from RGD passed the Assembly and Senate last week! All four bills now wait for Gov. Evers’ signature. We will keep you updated as things progress.


YOU made the difference!

Thank you again for attending RGD and advocating for the real estate industry and private property rights.
MORTGAGE PRE-APPROVAL VS PRE-QUALIFICATION

A common myth among consumers is that a mortgage pre-approval and a mortgage pre-qualification are one and the same. While the terms are often used interchangeably, they are two very different things.

A Pre-Qualification is only the first step and is a basic review of the consumer’s finances. When a borrower is pre-qualified, they have told their lender what their monthly income is and what their monthly debts are. A pre-qualification letter is generated stating that, based on the information given, the borrower can afford a mortgage payment for a specified loan amount. Keep in mind that the dollar amount the borrower is qualified for is often very different than what they can actually spend.

A Pre-Approval is a much more thorough process. Credit is checked and verified as is employment history. Down payment funds, current assets, bank account balances, etc. are all taken into consideration when reviewing creditworthiness. The lender will discuss the particulars of the various loan programs available to the borrower, counsel them on the pros and cons of each, and help them determine which is the best fit for their situation. 

Simply put, if a person is in the process of looking for a home to purchase, having a Pre-Approval Letter will give them an edge. In today’s real estate market, home sellers are more inclined to work with pre-approved buyers than those that are only pre-qualified. 
Please join us for coffee and a tour of the School District of Menomonee Falls with Superintendent, Corey Golla and School Board President, Faith Vanderhorst. Learn why the School District of Menomonee Falls is nationally recognized as one of the highest-performing school districts in the state.  

The event starts at 9 a.m. at the SDMF District Office, W156N8480 Pilgrim Road, Menomonee Falls, with a 9:30 a.m. departing time for the tour of schools. 
 
MAKE A DIFERENCE AND VOLUNTEER
On March 22, 2022, The GMAR, WRA, MLS, and other foundation Board Members are teaming up to help Feeding America and we need a team of volunteers to help us!

Date: March 22, 2022, 9:00am-11:30am.
Location: Feeding America Eastern WI Food Bank
1770 W Fond du Lac Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53205


Please email volunteer applications to carter@wra.org or call 608-240-8256
WEBINAR: VA LOAN INFORMATION PROGRAM
Provided by The GMAR’s Veteran’s Committee
 
Featured Speaker: Mark W. Lee, VA Loan Specialist
Mark is a US Marine that served 1989-1994 and was in artillery in the 1st Gulf War. Mark has been in the mortgage industry since 2001, working as a Loan Officer for different lenders and a wholesale A-paper rep for Countrywide Bank. Mark has been working with the VA for over 5 years in Loan Guaranty.
 
Tuesday, March 15th, 1:00 to 2:00 PM
 
Overview
  • Who are we? (VA Loan Guaranty)
  • Program overview
  • VA Buying Life Cycle
  • Eligibility to include Certificates of Eligibility
  • Property Types
  • Finance Options
  • Income
  • Credit
  • Appraisal and Property

DISCOUNTED PROMOTIONAL TICKETS
Missed the deadline to order VIP tickets, but still want a supply of complimentary admission tickets to provide to clients, crew, friends and family? Please use this online form to order discounted promotional tickets (cost to you of $6 per ticket - discount of $4 per ticket) for the 2022 REALTORS Home & Garden Show. Ticket orders will be available for pick-up at the GMAR Office (12300 W. Center Street, Wauwatosa, WI) or by mail for an additional fee of $5 per 100 tickets ordered (minimum $5 postage fee to mail).

FREE LINE-BY-LINE VIDEO SERIES
WRA is now making Line by Line (LBL) forms training video series available to all REALTOR® members free of charge. Previously a subscription-based service, this new offering provides all REALTOR® members with access to forms training to help raise the bar on professionalism, improve real estate forms knowledge, and provide members with the tools to confidently become experts on drafting forms.

REALTORS® should log into the WRA website at www.wra.org/mycourses or follow the links from the WRA homepage to access their forms. All 19 videos will automatically appear under “myCourses” and are available for immediate use. Please note, LBL is an exclusive benefit for REALTOR® members only and does not extend to Legal or Affiliate section memberships.

For a quick overview of which LBL videos are available from the WRA, please click this link http://www.wra.org/linebyline/
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE WISCONSIN REALTORS® WHO HAVE COMPLETED THE FAIRHAVEN TRAINING
The Wisconsin REALTORS® Association is committed to enhancing the fair housing knowledge of our members and bolstering their ability to promote fairness and stand out against real estate discrimination in all forms. Embracing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) brings strength and empowerment as we acknowledge there are differences in the workplace, ensures everyone gets fair treatment and equal access to resources and opportunities for success and engages everyone to participate and succeed.

What is Fairhaven?
Fairhaven is the National Association of REALTORS®' interactive fair housing training platform that uses the immersive power of storytelling to deliver powerful lessons to help promote equity in the housing market. During the training, you navigate real-life transaction simulations that confront challenging fair housing dilemmas, apply and assess your knowledge, and further your expertise by receiving valuable feedback.

See the Graduates
Many WRA members and staff have completed their journey through Fairhaven and stand ready to combat discrimination whenever it appears in their real estate transactions. 

New REALTORS® are added to the list monthly.
ATTENTION GMAR MEMBERS: SUPPORT AB 607
Workforce housing is one of the WRA's legislative priorities for this legislative session. The WRA supports AB 607, legislation authorizing the Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority (WHEDA) to make low-interest or no-interest loans for the rehabilitation of residential properties when certain circumstances apply.
 
Reinvesting in older housing stock pays off in the long run, and Wisconsin needs to invest in its older housing stock to build communities and create housing for Wisconsin's current and future workforce. 
 
To reach the governor’s desk, AB 607 must pass the Wisconsin Senate.
 
If you have not responded to the WRA’s call for action to encourage the Wisconsin Senate to invest in Wisconsin's older housing stock by taking up AB 607, click the button below to send a pre-written message to your state senator.
Tell your senator to SUPPORT AB 607.

IF YOU DID NOT RECEIVE THE EMAIL JUST CLICK THE BELOW LINK!!

The Call for Action is set to expire on MARCH 7, 2022. TAKE ACTION NOW!!!
UPCOMING GMAR EVENT
GMAR FLOWERS FOR SCHOLARS
Order hanging baskets and/or flower pots at a great price and for a good cause! $10 from each plant ordered will go towards the GMAR Youth Foundation college scholarship program.
 
ORDER DEADLINE EXTENDED: MARCH 4, 2022.
Pick-up is Tuesday, May 3rd - right on time for Mother's Day!
 
WOMEN'S COUNCIL OF REALTORS® TRIVIA NIGHT MARCH 9, 2022
GMAR MEMBERS ONLY FACEBOOK GROUP

Join our members-only Facebook group if you have not already done so. This group was created for our members to connect with each other and discuss industry-related questions/concerns as well as to keep you informed on association news and updates. If there are any specific topics you would like to see more of please let us know!

JOB POSTINGS
Client Care Specialist
Homesight Inspection
If your office is hiring for an administrative position that does not require a real estate license, we would be happy to share that information with the membership. See above for current postings.  If you have a job opening that you would like to add, please email Mary Xiong.
STAND OUT AS A FOCUS ON ENERGY® AMBASSADOR
Looking for new ways to bring added value to your clients? Consider becoming a FOCUS ON ENERGY® Ambassador. Focus on Energy partners with utilities across Wisconsin to provide resources and incentives for energy-efficient home products, equipment, and improvement projects.

Join the 700+ Wisconsin real estate professionals already offering these informational resources and exclusive perks to their clients. For more information, visit focusonenergy.com/ambassador or email ambassador@focusonenergy.com
DISCOVER MILWAUKEE RELOCATION GUIDE
The GMAR is once again sponsoring the Discover Milwaukee Relocation Guide. Covering Milwaukee, Waukesha, Ozaukee, Washington, and Racine counties, it is the Greater Milwaukee region’s #1 source for anyone looking to move or relocate to Wisconsin’s largest metro area.
 
You can provide a free copy of the Relocation Guide to your relocating clients and customers and share the website and digital editions as well.

Limited quantities of the publication are available at the GMAR office, or by contacting Metro Business Publications at pcanon@discovermilwaukee.com.
 
The purpose of the Relocation Guide is to create a complete package about moving to metro Milwaukee. Information is organized in easy-to-use sections, offering new residents everything they need at their fingertips:
  • Quality of Life
  • Things To Do
  • Average home price and details for communities
  • Career Opportunities
  • Schools and Education
  • Financing a Home
  • Helpful Information
 
GMAR members also have the opportunity to highlight their experience and expertise in a special section for Relocation Specialists. For rate information, contact Maribeth Delforge at 262-796-0224, or mbdelforge@discovermilwaukee.com.
REAL ESTATE SUPPLY STORE NOW AT
MINUTEMAN PRESS - BROOKFIELD
The real estate supply store is now located ONLY at Minuteman Press - Brookfield location (13680 W. Capitol Drive). Store hours are M-F between 8:30 AM and 5 PM. Contact Minuteman Press-Brookfield for more info, (262) 781-9622!
Comments, Suggestions, or Questions?...
Let us know how the GMAR can improve what we offer to you as members of our organization. Your feedback helps us to make quality improvements to our programs and benefits, so we appreciate it! Click here to e-mail feedback to the GMAR.
Greater Milwaukee Association of REALTORS®
12300 W. Center Street Milwaukee, WI 53222
414-778-4929 | www.GMAR.com