CAR News

Published: June 28, 2007

<p><strong>ESSAY WINNERS HONORED AT 2007 HOMEWORDS™ AWARDS CEREMONY</strong>Late last month, several high school students were honored at the 2007 HomeWords™ Awards Ceremony, held at the &quot;Los Angeles Times&quot; headquarters. HomeWords™ is a newspapers-in-education program designed to help California high school students learn about what it will take for them to own or rent a home in the future. For the third consecutive year, C.A.R. sponsored HomeWords™ in the communities served by six California newspapers: &quot;Los Angeles Times,&quot; &quot;San Francisco Chronicle,&quot; &quot;Fresno Bee,&quot; &quot;Sacramento Bee,&quot; &quot;San Jose Mercury News,&quot; and &quot;San Diego Union-Tribune.&quot; C.A.R.'s sponsorship provided classroom sets of newspapers once a week to participating teachers and students to use in their lessons.<br /><br />As part of the HomeWords™ curriculum, students learn about renting, buying or selling a home; how their behavior with money could affect their lifestyles and ability to become homeowners in the years to come; and other issues concerning homeownership. The HomeWords™ program reinforces the message that homeownership is attainable and that REALTORS® are an important resource in their communities to help Californians attain the dream of homeownership. Students also participate in an essay contest as part of the program.<br /><br />&quot;I'm so grateful that we have this resource to use in school. It brings a certain kind of reality to students' studies,&quot; said John Moe, a teacher from Herbert Hoover High School in Glendale, which was represented by two contest winners at the event. &quot;The CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® is great for having this contest and giving the kids a chance to express their feelings about this subject.&quot;<br /><br />Students honored at the 2007 HomeWords™ Awards Ceremony in Los Angeles include: Francis Juego, Marina High School; Ashley Assad, El Dorado High School; Pial Hossain, Bravo Medical Magnet High School; Tracy Kadomasu, Herbert Hoover High School; Ling-Bing Li, San Gabriel High School; Shreyasi Ghosh, West High School; and Annette Asaturyan, Herbert Hoover High School.</p><p><strong>CONSUMER CONFIDENCE FALLS AMID CONCERNS ABOUT JOB MARKET</strong>After rebounding in May, consumer confidence took a downward turn this month, according to yesterday's report from The Conference Board. The organization's Consumer Confidence Index decreased to 103.9 (1985=100) in June, down from 108.5 in May. The Present Situation and Expectations indexes also declined, falling to 127.9 and 87.9, respectively.<br /><br />According to the report, consumers' remain cautious about current business conditions and the labor market. The percentage of consumers who claim jobs are &quot;hard to get&quot; increased to 21.1 percent in June, while those claiming current economic conditions are &quot;good&quot; declined to 27.4 percent. &quot;A perceived softening in present-day business and employment conditions are the major reasons behind this month's pull-back in confidence,&quot; said Lynn Franco, director of The Conference Board Consumer Research Center. &quot;Looking ahead, consumers remain rather subdued about short-term economic prospects. All in all, the glass remains half empty and half full.&quot;</p><p><strong>CALIFORNIA HOME SALES DECREASE 25 PERCENT IN MAY</strong>The median price of an existing single-family home in California increased 4.8 percent in May and sales decreased 25 percent compared with the same period a year ago, C.A.R. reported this week. &quot;The decline in sales continues to be driven by both tighter underwriting standards since the start of the year and the adverse psychological impact of news regarding foreclosures and the subprime situation,&quot; said C.A.R. Vice President and Chief Economist Leslie Appleton-Young. &quot;In particular, the lower end of the market â€&quot; which is the part of the market that is most affected by the subprime situation â€&quot; has seen greater declines in sales and weaker prices than the higher end of the market. This will likely be a recurring theme in the coming months.&quot;<br /><br />According to the report, the median price of an existing, single-family detached home in California during May was $591,180, a 4.8 percent increase over the revised $563,860 median for May 2006. Also last month, closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California totaled 366,370 at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate, down 25 percent compared with the sales pace recorded one year earlier and down 1.9 percent from home resale activity in April 2007.</p><p><strong>INDUSTRY LEADERS HEADLINE TECH TUESDAY EVENTS</strong>Tap into the technology know-how of real estate's leaders at Tech Tuesday, a full day of technology training preceding the CALIFORNIA REALTOR® EXPO. Taking place on Tuesday, Oct. 9 at the Anaheim Convention Center, Tech Tuesday includes a variety of educational seminars covering topics ranging from WINForms Online® to Treo™ Smartphones to virtual tours.<br /><br />Highlights include &quot;REALTOR® 2.0: The Next Big Thing,&quot; a panel discussion featuring Ed Dilworth, executive vice president and chief contact officer, Campbell-Ewald; Shana Pearl, director of technology, Prudential California Realty; and Steve Schultz, director of product management, Yahoo! Real Estate. Other don't-miss events include &quot;The Medici Effect: Ground-breaking Innovation at the Intersection of Disciplines, Cultures, and Technology,&quot; a luncheon presentation featuring author and entrepreneur Frans Johansson.<br /><br />Registration for Tech Tuesday and other CALIFORNIA REALTOR® EXPO events is available online at <a title="" href=""><strong><font color="#333366"></font></strong></a>. The registration fee for Tech Tuesday is $85 until Oct. 9 and $100 on-site.</p><p><strong>CUSTOMIZABLE MARKETING MATERIALS AVAILABLE FOR C.A.R.'S AD CAMPAIGN</strong>With customizable postcards and HTML components now available, C.A.R. members can integrate the look and feel of C.A.R.'s 2007 Consumer Advertising Campaign into their own marketing efforts. Designed to highlight the value REALTORS® bring to the transaction, the $2.3 million campaign features four new radio spots, interactive Web banners placed on popular Web sites, and search engine marketing on Yahoo! and Google directing consumers to a new Web site,, that reinforces key messages of the radio ads while providing valuable information for consumers when buying or selling a home.<br /><br />For complete information on the campaign, visit C.A.R. Online (<a title="" href=""><strong><font color="#333366"></font></strong></a>), and click on the &quot;2007 Consumer Advertising Campaign&quot; button on the home page. There you will be able to listen to the radio spots, view the Web banner ads, and learn more about the campaign and how you can make it your own.<br /><br />Additionally, an online postcard customization and printing service can be accessed at <a title="" href=""><strong><font color="#333366"></font></strong></a> (access code CAR). There are three postcard designs from which to choose, with the option to mail each customized postcard directly to an uploaded mailing list of your clients and prospects via first-class mail. You can customize the postcards with your contact information, photo, photo caption, and personalized message. The cost to mail the postcards directly to your uploaded mailing list includes first-class postage, sorting and the printing of each address on the postcards. If you have questions on ordering the customized postcards, please call CGX Solutions/Anderson Printing Customer Service at (323) 460-4115, ext. 147.</p><p><strong>RELAY™ VERSION 5.0 RELEASED</strong>RE FormsNet last week announced the release of RELAY™ Version 5.0, a new enhanced version of the Internet tool for real estate professionals to manage transactions and collaborate with clients and affiliates through a custom Web site. The newest enhancements to RELAY™ add brokerage tools to the existing document, activity, and file management features, including customized reports and controlled document approval, which real estate professionals across the country are using to win today's buyers and sellers.<br /><br />Hailed by industry leaders as a mission critical enhancement to the services provided by REALTORS® to home buyers and sellers, RELAY™ has maintained a rapid schedule of advancements in quality features development since its launch in 2005. The software already incorporates direct service provider access, allowing users to invite escrow, title, attorneys, and other service providers to participate directly in RELAY™ online real estate transactions. Users who are NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (NAR) members also can distinguish themselves with a RELAY™ badge in the &quot;Find a REALTOR®&quot; section of <a title="" href=""><strong><font color="#333366"></font></strong></a> and <a title="" href=""><strong><font color="#333366"></font></strong></a>, attracting new clients and highlighting their services as a RELAY™ agent.<br /><br />RELAY™ has been declared compliant with security standards set by Cybertrust Inc., a global information security specialist, and was awarded the REALTOR® Secure designation by the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®' Center for REALTOR® Technology (CRT), certifying that best practices are in place to protect client data and systems from risk.</p>

Last modified: June 28, 2007 at 3:18 pm | Originally published: June 28, 2007 at 3:18 pm
Printed: September 30, 2020