Notes From Readers: Ease Investor Loan Restrictions

March 1, 2012

Regarding the article “Fed Advocates REO Rental Program” (Daily Real Estate News, Jan. 5, 2012), the Fed needs to ease the restrictions for investor loans to investors that have good credit and maintain more than four mortgages in good standing. We have lots of potential buyers in our marketplace, but because they have four or more loans, they are prevented from purchasing. It’s a ridiculous restriction and inhibits small business. Loans to qualified investors were not the mortgage problem. —June Harvey, Cutler Real Estate, Canton, Ohio 

No Standard Commission

Regarding the online article about founder Colby Sambrotto (Daily Real Estate News, Feb. 17, 2012), I am concerned that the words “a standard commission” would be used in a REALTOR® Magazine article, even in a quote. Granted, this man has a lot to learn, as he admitted, but there is no standard commission, as we all know very well. —Linda Philpott, Westwind Realty, Aurora, Colo.

Transfer Taxes Support Communities

Not all REALTORS® agree that challenging real estate transfer taxes is a good idea (“Louisiana Win About More Than Transfer Taxes,” Jan./Feb. 2012, page 10). I’m a 31-year broker in Telluride, Colo., a small resort town in the southwest corner of the state. The 3 percent transfer tax that our buyers pay as a chip into the pot has been critical for this small tourist, development, and real estate–dependent market. It would be devastating to not have that resource for our infrastructure.

Our unique gondola, for example, which transports tourists between two communities and the ski mountain, is 100 percent paid for by the transfer tax in Mountain Village. I wish every growing community in Colorado had the transfer tax; they’d be healthier for it and better to live in. —Erik Fallenius, Nevasca Realty Inc., Telluride, Colo.

Pronunciation Matters

I enjoyed Robert Wilson’s commentary (“Glad to Be a ‘Real-a-tor,’” Nov./Dec. 2012, page 46) about the rampant mispronunciation of the word “R-E-A-L-T-O-R.” I started a Facebook page a while ago titled “I Know The Word ‘REALTOR’ Is NOT Pronounced As ‘reel-a-tor.’” Seriously. It’s a “just for fun” page, and at last count we had 3,380 members! The consensus of the members is that we have no beef with what the public calls us—just as long as they call us! But it’s just a bit much to take when our fellow professionals mispronounce REALTOR®. There’s simply no excuse for that. —Peggy Edwards, green, Future Home Realty Inc., Tampa, Fla.

Editor’s Note: We would like to clarify some of the statements made in the January/February Commentary, “Glad to Be a ‘Real-a-tor.’ ” In fact, REALTOR® is not a job title and it does not identify the services provided or tasks performed by a licensee. Instead, REALTOR® identifies a person’s status as a member of the local, state, and national associations and their commitment to conduct their business, whether as a real estate agent, commercial broker, property manager, appraiser, or other real estate specialty, in accordance with the obligations of membership, including the Code of Ethics. The term was trademarked, not copyrighted, by the association to provide it legal protection.




Small-Home Trend Reverses

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Today’s new-home buyer may surprise you. According to statistics presented at this year’s International Builders’ Show in Orlando, the average start size increased from 2,381 square feet to 2,522 square feet and the average sales price rose from $264,900 to $274,400 in 2011. New homes have more amenities, too. Posted Feb. 10 by Erica Christoffer, Multimedia Web Producer, REALTOR® Magazine

Michelle responded: What I am seeing is a trend where adult children must live with their parents—either because alone they can’t afford it or because the parents are elderly and need help. Having more bedrooms helps with this situation.

Mark responded: Nashville’s hottest product—duplexes, triplexes, and quadplexes. We simply don’t have enough of them. Sadly, people stopped building duplexes in the 1950s.

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Note: Letters and blog posts are edited for space and clarity. Publication of a letter doesn’t constitute an en­dorsement of the writer’s views by the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® or ­REALTOR® Magazine. Submission of a letter constitutes permission to publish it in any form or medium.