Monday, December 19, 2011

GTAR Weekly Facts – December 19, 2011


Monday, December 19: Office closes at 3:00 p.m.
Friday, December 23: Office is closed all day
Monday, December 26: Office is closed all day
Friday, December 30: Office closes at 12:30 p.m.
Monday, January 2: Office is closed all day
December 23 thru January 2—Board Store Closed for Inventory
The GTAR/NORES Board Store will be closed for inventory Friday, December 23 through Monday, January 2, 2012, so please plan ahead. This will not affect Key and KeyBox purchases.
Get Your Nominations in for GTAR’s 2011 Sales Associate of the Year
The winner will be announced at the GTAR/NORES Installation & Awards Banquet February 16, 2012. Don’t miss the opportunity to recognize an outstanding Sales Associate. Nomination forms are available online at or Click Here. Deadline to submit completed forms to GTAR is December 31, 2011.
Get Your Nominations in for GTAR’s 2011 REALTOR® of the Year
The winner will be announced at the GTAR/NORES Installation & Awards Banquet February 16, 2012. Don’t miss the opportunity to recognize a REALTOR® (Broker) for their service to the real estate industry. Nomination forms are available online at or Click Here. Deadline to submit completed forms to GTAR is December 31, 2011.
Late! GTAR 2012 Annual Dues
If you have not paid your GTAR dues, a $20 late payment fee has been added to your account. Notices were emailed October 5, and payment was due by November 30, 2011. REALTOR® dues are $494 and REALTOR-ASSOCIATE® dues are $464. For a breakdown of where your dues dollars go:
2012 Real Estate Planners Now in GTAR Board Store
A limited supply is available. Prices range from $19.95 to $39.95. If you want one don’t wait or you may miss out!
Coming in 2012: Expanded REALTOR® Appreciation Day
REALTOR® Appreciation Day will expand to include an Education Conference featuring two CE class tracks—one for associates and one for brokers. The Associate Track will focus on technology, and be taught by nationally recognized technology guru, Dick Betts. The Broker Track will focus on issues pertaining to Brokerage Management, and be taught by strategic consultant, Theresa Stewart. All classes will be held at UMAC on April 4 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. On April 5, the Education Conference will continue with one education track for everyone focusing on technology; this will be a fast-paced session with multiple topics and speakers. The Education Conference will end on a positive note with a presentation by world renowned motivational speaker and author, Jim Stovall entitled: Yes You Can. The Education Conference will cost just $50 per member; you can register online at But, if you want year-long, super-savings on CE classes, check out GTAR’s new Class Pass for only $25 more! (See information below.) Not to worry…we will still have the same great, Trade Show you know and love from 11:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m.—complete with valuable information, door prizes, food, and fun—and all for free thanks to GTAR’s Firm Affiliates!
GTAR Class Pass—Your Ticket to Learn in 2012!
With GTAR's Class Pass you get admission to the Education Conference classes and motivational speaker presentation (see description above), a $50 value, PLUS any and all regular CE classes GTAR offers in 2012—starting in January—for just $75! For more information and to purchase your GTAR Class Pass, log on to; from the Main Menu, click on the red Education bar, then click Register for Classes, and look for GTAR Class Pass.
Need CE before the end of 2011?
You can take CE classes online anytime! GTAR is partnered with both McKissock Education and Barnes Real Estate School to offer you a variety of online continuing education classes to fulfill your OREC requirements. In addition to CE classes, McKissock offers a variety of classes for appraisers; Charles Barnes offers the 45 Hour Post License and 90 Hour Brokers License courses...AND, the new 15 hour OREC required Broker in Charge course is now available online through Charles Barnes. So how does it work? Simply go to, click on the logos for either school, and follow the instructions. Any and all classes you take through McKissock and Charles Barnes are reported directly to OREC.
At GTAR in January—All 12 OREC Required CE Credit Hours
Don’t wait until the end of your three-year licensing period to start working on your CE hours. As CE classes are scheduled, information and registration will be available on; from the main Member Services page, simply click the red Education bar.
(HOT) Basic Contract: Wednesday, January 11, 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m., pending OREC approval (Class Pass Eligible)
(PSC) REALTOR® Ethics: Thursday, January 19, 1:00-4:00 p.m. (Free)
(FHR) Fair Housing and Ethical Practices: Wednesday, January 25, 1:00-4:00 p.m. (Class Pass Eligible)
(BRA) OK Broker Relationships: Monday, January 30, 1:00-4:00 p.m. (Class Pass Eligible)
January 11-12
Broker in Charge Course
Attention ALL Real Estate BROKERS: Your OREC Continuing Education Requirements are changing! If your license type is a Broker Manager (BM), Proprietor Broker (BP), or Branch Broker (BB) (even if only for ONE day during that license term) AND your real estate license expires on or after June 30, 2012, then you are required to complete an approved 15-hour Broker in Charge (BIC) class PLUS an additional 6 hours of required subject matter in at least two core courses (BRA, PSC, FHR or HOT) prior to your license renewal. Cost is $90. Class size is limited to 15. For more information and to register, go to

Reminder: GTAR/NORES Winter Weather Policy
We are in that time of year when the weather does not always work in our favor; therefore, GTAR/NORES has established the following inclement weather policy for all education classes at GTAR (CE, Computer, New Member Orientation, etc.): If Tulsa Public Schools are closed the day of a scheduled class due to hazardous driving conditions, the GTAR/NORES class is canceled. Depending on the type of class being canceled, the class will either be rescheduled for a future date or a full refund will be issued. In addition, for those of you who live outside the Tulsa area, if schools in your area are closed the day of class or you are uncomfortable making the drive, you can still receive a refund, but you MUST call or email us that day (day of the class). You cannot just be a “no show” and expect a refund. Please be sure to check one of the local news channels the night before and/or morning of a scheduled class for school closings.
Need a Business Plan for 2012?
Do you have a plan for 2012? Do you want to work with more buyers? Free business plan builder from® helps you review this year’s results and set listings and sales goals for next year. It’ll even help you assess tools so you can plug in solutions that deliver results.  Make 2012 the best year ever.
“Data Checker” Implemented TODAY, December 19
Today we implemented a system called “Data Checker.”  It will assist NORES staff in reviewing listings for rule compliance. NORES staff has done this process manually for years, but this will help get the notices out faster and get listings modified, as needed, in a timely manner.  If you receive a notice, it will be from “MLS Data Checker.” Since this is a new format for notices, please read the email. Then, if you still have questions, contact the NORES office. Typically, the notice will be requesting you to modify your listing and will contain a deadline date. In addition, notices will be sent to the Listing Agent and Add/Edit person.  Future notices for failure to make the requested changes will also be sent to the Office Manager and/or Office Broker.   
We will be getting a new MLS system called Fusion early 2012; you won’t need a new PC to run the Fusion MLS system.

However, you might want to compare your computer and consider the recommended stats for optimum performance of Fusion. IF your computer doesn’t meet the minimum recommendations, it is likely a very old PC, and you are missing out on much more than just MLS features. The speed and reliability of a newer computer can help to alleviate the pains and struggles of program lockups, timeouts, slow opening and closing of programs, reboots… and much more. Windows (Recommended): 1.8 GHz Intel Core Duo, AMD Athlon 64 X2 4200, or equivalent processor; 3 GB of RAM if using Windows XP; 4 GB of RAM if using Windows 7 or Vista. (Minimum) PC stats for running your upcoming 2012 new MLS-Fusion: 3 GHz Intel Pentium 4 (single core) or equivalent processor; 1 GB of RAM if using Windows XP; 2 GB of RAM (Windows 7 or Vista). Macintosh (Recommended): 1.33 GHz Intel Core Duo, or equivalent processor; 4 GB of Ram. (Minimum) Mac stats: 500 MHz Intel PowerPC (single core) or equivalent processor; 2 GB of Ram. You can check your current system stats by right clicking on My Computer, and selecting Properties. Call the Helpdesk at 918-664-0505 if you need assistance. Watch for future GTAR communications for more upcoming info on your next generation MLS—Fusion. (Don’t have a smart phone to scan the QR code? Then click here to view the message.)
November Home Sales Stats are Now Available
Important Notice: NAR’s Re-benchmarking
On Dec. 21, NAR will release new existing-home sales (EHS) numbers based on a re-benchmarking of its baseline home-sale calculation. NAR has reported, based on preliminary findings, this will result in previous annual existing-home sales numbers being revised downward.  Multiple national news media outlets have already reported NAR home sales data has been significantly “off” for some time now. As a REALTOR® Association, our credibility in providing accurate information is extremely important.  
What you can say if the media contact you.
·   The numbers being reported are not final results. NAR will announce the final results of the re-benchmarking process on December 21.
·   The data provided by NORES is not affected by this re-benchmarking. NAR’s data revisions are in regard to national aggregate data, and not information as reported by NORES or individual MLSs.
·   Media should contact NORES, 918-663-7500, regarding accuracy of local home sales numbers.
To understand how and why NAR undertook the re-benchmarking, which is something NAR undertakes roughly every 10 years to ensure the continued accuracy of its national EHS numbers, click on the following link This video explains NAR’s process and rationale for its new calculation. 
NAR Urges Reform of Mortgage Finance System
“Reforming the secondary mortgage market is essential to ensuring a reliable source of mortgage lending for consumers in all types of markets, and is integral to the nation’s economic and housing recovery,” NAR’s 2012 Director of REALTOR® Party Activities Tom Salomone said in testimony. NAR supports efforts to increase private capital in the housing finance market and reduce the size of the government’s involvement. Nonetheless, NAR believes that full privatization is not a viable option, and that the federal government must have a continued role in the conventional conforming portion of the secondary mortgage market.
Veissi: No Time to Risk Harm to FHA
NAR President Moe Veissi made a forceful case Thursday (Dec. 1) before a key congressional committee to protect FHA from potentially destabilizing changes to the agency’s main insurance fund. “The FHA mortgage insurance program plays an important and vital role in the nation’s housing financing system and has shown tremendous leadership and strength during the economic crisis,” Veissi said. He also argued that the absence of the FHA in housing finance would result in a spike in foreclosures and blighted communities.
FHFA Releases Summary of REO Responses
condensed collection of responses to the FHFA’s call for ideas regarding the best way to deal with Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Housing Administration’s REO assets was released last week. The agency said that most respondents suggested strategies that involved renting of the properties for a period of time, and many recommended offering tenants an opportunity to purchase. In a letter sent to FHFA on Sept. 15, 2011, NAR emphasized the need for mortgage financing for qualified purchasers and expansion of resources for loan modification, refinancing, and short sale efforts. NAR also encouraged the continued timely and orderly disposition of REO inventory assets through expediting of existing processes.
Special Pricing for REALTORS® on the “Nutcracker”
The Tulsa Ballet is offering special pricing to GTAR members for the “Nutcracker” performances. To purchase tickets, call Charlotte Brown at 918-392-5914, tell her you are a GTAR member, and she will find the best seats available for the performance you choose. Performances are held at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center. Ticket prices for GTAR members will range from $20-$59, depending on location of seats. “Nutcracker” dates of performances: December 22, 23 at 7:00 p.m. To view seating chart, visit
Free for Members: Tips on Greening Up the Holidays
Help clients rediscover the true spirit of the holiday season by branding and hand delivering five free articles from the REALTOR® Content Resource on greening up the holidays, including 7 ways to have an eco-friendly Christmas. Those and other free articles are ready for you to quickly and easily drop into marketing campaigns by adding them to your e-newsletter; posting them to Facebook, Twitter, or blog or Web site; e-mailing them; or branding, printing, and hand-delivering them.
Skip the Lines, Counter with Avis “Preferred”
As a NAR member you can join the Avis “Preferred” Program, a complimentary service that allows you to keep your personal car rental preferences on file, and skip the rental counter and the paperwork every time you rent from Avis. Go straight to your car with no waiting. Enrollment is free and easy
Free Consumer Content: Holiday Home Improvements
The latest free content for your  websites, blogs, social media pages, and print resources from HouseLogic’s REALTOR® Content Resource is about helping clients spruce up their home for the holidays. One piece includes a guide to paint sheens.
Foreclosures are in Decline, but More Expected
RealtyTrac reports home foreclosures were down again in November, falling 3 percent compared to October, and are now down 14 percent from where they were a year ago. The report showed that 1 in every 579 housing units had a foreclosure filing during the month. It was noted a decline in foreclosures is typical at this time of year, and that “new waves” of foreclosures are likely to hit the markets early next year. The report also stated Foreclosure auctions were scheduled on 96,540 properties in November, up 13 percent from October, but still down 17 percent from November 2010.
Builders Blast Idea to Use Fannie, Freddie Fees for Payroll Tax Cut
The National Home Builders Association (NHBA) is criticizing a congressional proposal to raise fees charged by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and use the money to pay for an extension of the payroll tax cut through 2012. “Congress is essentially proposing to raise taxes on millions of potential homebuyers in order to pay for a payroll tax cut and other non-housing legislative initiatives,” said NAHB Chairman Bob Nielson. Fannie and Freddie charge lenders “guarantee fees” to protect against losses. Housing interests maintain those fees should remain wholly within the housing finance system and not be used for outside purposes.
Other Housing Information
The National Association of Home Builders Association (NAHB) issued a press release December 8 asking for reforms in appraisal practices and oversight. With the decline in home prices appearing to have ended or be coming to an end in most parts of the country, resolving the appraisal and credit crunch issues remain a top priority for the association. NAHB Chairman Bob Nielsen stated, “We will continue to work with all stakeholders in this debate to find solutions.” Complete NAHB Press Release and Appraisal Foundation Response to Press Release.
Comments on the following REALTOR® applicants should be submitted by REALTOR® members to the Membership Committee, c/o GTAR, PO Box 470603, Tulsa, OK 74147.
Diane Goslin, Bungalow Blue (Reinstatement, Second Publication)
Tracy Moellers, Moellers Properties, LLC (Second Publication)
Robbie Scott, John Hausam Property Management & Leasing (Second Publication)
Bradley White, Williams & Williams Auctioneers (Second Publication)