SRCAR® discusses state of affairs in real estate industry

Southwest Riverside County Association of Realtors® (SRCAR) held an affiliate committees lunch and learn at the “The State of Affairs in Today’s Real Estate Market” Tuesday, Sept. 24 in Murrieta.

The event included a lunch and an education from several guest speakers on what’s going on in the industry on different levels.

State Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez briefly spoke at the events, and even gave guests a few laughs with her sarcastic jokes about the state of the political climate.

“I have good news for you; the legislature is out of session now. So you can hold on to your wallets until January,” she said, this made the audience clap loudly.

Between 2007 and 2011 more than one and a half of Californians received notice about default on their homes, according to Melendez, who resides in Lake Elsinore.

“In Riverside County we’ve been hit the hardest,” she said. “My city was listed in GQ Magazine as Foreclosure Alley.”

“I can think of a million ways that I’d like to get into GQ Magazine, and that’s not one of them,” she added.

More than 500 families lost their homes to foreclosure every day during that time. However, she said, SRCAR® has helped the community to keep their homes.

“That is no small task,” she said.

She also said there are some members of the legislature that want to unravel Prop 13, which cuts property taxes down to one percent (this includes residential and commercial property) and limits the growth rate of future assessments to two percent. However, once properties are sold, new taxations are directed to value the properties at their market value, according to

“They’re not going to give up on that…They want to remove the tax protections,” Melendez said, to which she disagrees with.

She told guests to keep an eye on this because for some members it’s their last year in the legislature. This means they want to go out with bells ringing, saying, “Look what I did!” she said.

“These are the members who are going to try to pull a fast one on you,” Melendez said.

Alvin Toney of Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals (VAREPS) also was there on behalf of veteran affairs.

He said they are “vets helping vets” and they help veterans to find homeownership.

“We’re looking for people who have a passion for helping veterans,” said Toney.

They have been “blessed” to get veterans into homes, he said.

This effort has been made in part to homes that have been donated by banks such as J.P Chase Morgan and Wells Fargo.

He said they are slowly being seen a demographic, and this has taken a long time to get to. He said this is difficult because unlike looking at a demographic like White, Asian or African-American, “How do you make a vet a demographic?”

Other speakers included Myrna Crowther from Prime Lending and Cindy Wessells from The Mortgage Mall, and Walter Harris, Top Level Reality, R.E Agent, who spoke about integrity and ethics.

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